Negligence and Wrongful Death

January 4, 2012

When a wrongful death occurs, it is often due to negligence on one party's fault. But what exactly does negligence—or even wrongful death—mean?

And what, specifically, can it mean for you?

In a case of wrongful death do you need a wrongful death lawyer? Or perhaps only a personal injury attorney?

From a legal standpoint, negligence is some form of action or inaction by a person who fails to use reasonable care, typically resulting in harm caused to another person—though negligence can cause harm to property as well.

  • If a person does not act as an ordinary, reasonable person might, they can be negligent.
  • Whether or not a person has been negligent can be determined by whoever is trying the case, though there are some laws that directly define negligence, or negligence per se.
  • For instance, if someone violates a law and consequently causes direct harm—like ignoring a stop sign and hitting someone in the crosswalk—this is a case of negligence per se.

Wrongful death is often a consequence of negligence or careless action or inaction of another party.

  • In a wrongful death claim there is no malice or intention to kill, but a death has arisen from the actions of another party.
  • Some common wrongful death claims come from cases involving medical malpractice, defective products, dangerous property conditions, and motor vehicle accidents.
  • Wrongful death claims offer a way to redress damages and loss when an accident does occur.
  • Compensation is determined on a state-by-state basis.

Negligence does not always result in a wrongful death. Nor are wrongful deaths always caused by negligence. A number of factors come into play with either of these, so it is important to consult a personal injury lawyer or a wrongful death lawyer, in the case of either.

If you do need the assistance, consider finding the help you need at Padilla Law Group, LLP Find us online or call 1-800-LAW-1199.


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