Hartford Wrongful Death Lawyer
At Hassett & George, P.C., we recognize the profound pain and sorrow that accompany the sudden loss of a loved one in Hartford, Connecticut. No family should ever face such a heart-wrenching ordeal. Our dedicated team of Hartford wrongful death lawyers is by your side in these trying times, offering compassionate understanding and legal guidance. We are deeply committed to seeking justice for families, especially when negligence has resulted in such tragic outcomes. If you find yourself in this situation, let us be your advocates. Speak with our legal team today and request a free consultation.
What Is a Wrongful Death Claim?
A wrongful death arises when an individual or entity neglects a legal responsibility, leading to a tragic loss of life. Certain immediate family members or a designated representative from the deceased’s estate can initiate a wrongful death lawsuit in such situations. To succeed in a wrongful death lawsuit, plaintiffs have to establish specific criteria:
- The alleged party acted negligently or committed an intentionally harmful act.
- Their conduct directly resulted in a fatality.
- There are measurable damages linked to the death.
Once these criteria get met, the court might award compensation to the family or estate. Alternatively, the responsible party or their insurance provider may propose a settlement.
Distinguishing Wrongful Death Claims
Wrongful death claims are when a family seeks justice for a loved one lost due to another’s thoughtless actions. The primary difference between wrongful death and personal injury claims in Hartford is that the former involves loss of life, either directly from the incident or due to inadequate post-injury care.
It’s also vital to understand the difference between wrongful death and murder. While both involve loss of life, wrongful death stems from accidents or negligent behavior without the intention to cause harm. In contrast, murder involves a direct intent to end a life. Wrongful death suits go to civil court, focusing on compensation, while murder is a criminal offense, often leading to imprisonment.
Wrongful death cases can come from various scenarios, from medical oversights to devastating road accidents. The law stands firm, and our Hartford wrongful death attorneys fight to hold individuals, corporations, or professionals accountable for negligence. Notably, initiating a wrongful death claim doesn’t always require a concurrent criminal investigation, and vice versa.
Common Causes Leading to Wrongful Death
Every accident carries potential risks, but specific incidents more frequently result in tragic outcomes. Here are some prevalent causes of wrongful deaths:
- Boating accidents, swimming pool accidents and other accidents in water bodies resulting in drownings
- Accidents on someone else’s property. This could include tragic slip and fall accidents, construction accidents, and more
- Fatal car accidents, truck accidents, and motorcycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents such as hit-and-run accidents
- Criminal actions
- Defective products leading to fatalities
- Incidents at workplaces
- Medical errors or malpractice
- Prolonged exposure to harmful substances like asbestos
- Tragic outcomes from nursing home neglect or mistreatment
It’s essential to remember that behind every wrongful death claim is a grieving family seeking justice and closure, and a qualified Hartford wrongful death lawyer can walk you through your options.
How Accidental and Wrongful Death Claims in Connecticut Work
Connecticut law categorizes a wrongful death claim as filing a lawsuit to try and win compensation due to damages resulting from a death. At its core, these cases mirror personal injury claims. However, since the injured party is no longer available to represent their case, it’s up to another responsible party, typically the estate’s executor or administrator, to step in. In the context of Connecticut, the criteria for proving wrongful death mirror that of any personal injury claim.
Consider a scenario involving negligence: the party allegedly responsible would have had a duty to care for the victim. Their failure to uphold this duty should directly lead to the unfortunate death. It is important to note that in Connecticut, the consequences for wrongful death are limited to financial penalties. This sets it apart from criminal cases, which might result in a jail or prison sentence. Also, Connecticut’s legal framework allows for two distinct claims following a wrongful death: a claim to address the wrongful death itself and an estate claim that covers financial damages and the pain and suffering experienced.
The Mechanics of a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Connecticut
In Connecticut, the clock starts ticking on wrongful death claims with a two-year statute of limitations beginning from the date of death. In the aftermath of such a grievous loss, legal options might not be on your mind. However, there are exceptions to this two-year window, which highlights the importance of consulting with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney. Their expertise can ensure you’re within the statute of limitations while going through this complex process. The length of a wrongful death lawsuit can vary depending on various factors:
- The reason for the death is clear.
- The willingness of the individual who may be responsible to admit their mistake.
Despite an obvious fault, some groups may try to create defensive strategies. They could, for example, claim that another party shared responsibility or that the deceased contributed to their own death. Even when they admit fault, many wrongful death cases go into court proceedings, especially when precise fault percentages are required. These legal proceedings can lengthen the time it takes to resolve a case.
What Are Some Examples of Wrongful Death Cases?
Wrongful death cases happen when an individual loses their life due to the negligence or misconduct of another party. These cases can manifest in various ways, some more common than others, and they include:
- Criminal acts. Although wrongful death cases are civil actions, they can arise from criminal acts like assault or other violent crimes.
- Defective products. From faulty car parts to unsafe children’s toys, products without rigorous testing or design flaws can lead to fatal consequences.
- Medical malpractice. One of the leading causes of wrongful death is medical malpractice. This occurs when a healthcare professional or institution fails to provide the standard of care that a patient should reasonably expect, leading to the patient’s death. According to a recent report in Connecticut, there were 426 medical malpractice claims in which a patient tragically lost their life.
- Motor vehicle accidents. Accidents involving cars, trucks, motorcycles, or pedestrians — often due to distracted driving, drunk driving, or reckless driving — can tragically lead to fatalities.
- Nursing home abuse and negligence. As our loved ones age, we entrust their care to nursing homes, expecting them to get treated with dignity and respect. Unfortunately, nursing home negligence and abuse have become alarmingly prevalent. From physical to emotional abuse, neglect in these establishments can lead to dire consequences, including the wrongful death of residents.
- Workplace accidents. Certain jobs pose higher risks, and when safety protocols are not adhered to, it can result in fatal workplace accidents.
In any wrongful death scenario, it’s vital to deeply understand the circumstances surrounding the event to ensure justice gets served for the deceased and their families. If you believe a loved one has been a wrongful death victim in any of these contexts, it’s essential to consult with legal professionals who can guide you through the complexities of the case.
Limits to Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Connecticut
In Connecticut, the guidelines surrounding who can file a wrongful death claim are in CT Gen Stat § 52-555. According to this statute, a wrongful death claim’s primary goal is to get damages reflecting the value of the deceased individual’s life. Additionally, the estate can file a lawsuit for monetary damages, potentially including compensation for pain and suffering.
However, it’s vital to note that Connecticut law does not allow surviving family members to file a wrongful death lawsuit. This responsibility rests on the shoulders of the executor or administrator of the deceased person’s estate. They are the ones who represent the interests of the dead and their family in the lawsuit. Should you enlist the help of a Hartford wrongful death lawyer, they will typically help you get compensation for:
- Distant family members. In cases where siblings, grandparents, or other distant relatives were financially reliant on the deceased, they, too, can be eligible for compensation.
- Immediate family members. This includes spouses and children (including those who are adopted), reflecting their close connection to the deceased.
- Life partners and financial dependents. It’s not just legal spouses who can claim; domestic partners or those who were financially dependent on the deceased, such as a life partner, are also considered.
It’s worth noting that if the deceased did not have a designated executor or administrator for their estate, the court takes the initiative to appoint one. This ensures that the interests of the dead and their family always have representation. Given the complexities surrounding wrongful death claims, it’s crucial to consult with a wrongful death lawyer in Hartford who understands Connecticut’s laws and can provide the necessary guidance and support.
Compensation for Damages in Wrongful and Accidental Death Lawsuits
It is incredibly challenging and emotional if you lose a loved one, especially due to another’s negligence. On top of the grief, families may have to take on the complexities of filing a lawsuit. In Connecticut, compensation in wrongful and accidental death lawsuits can vary based on several factors, including the claimant’s relationship to the deceased. Here’s a breakdown of potential settlements that the court may award in such a case:
- Bystander emotional distress. Specific to close family members who might have witnessed the tragic incident, this compensation acknowledges the trauma of experiencing such a moment.
- Economic loss. This considers the tangible financial contributions the deceased would have provided, such as anticipated earnings, benefits, or potential inheritance.
- Funeral expenses. To help with the immediate financial burden, compensation might cover the costs of burying or cremating a loved one.
- General damages. A more encompassing category, this covers non-economic losses that aren’t easily quantified, such as the joy, guidance, and nurturing the deceased brought to their family.
- Loss of companionship. Especially relevant for spouses, this compensation recognizes the emotional and supportive value of the relationship lost.
- Medical, hospital, and nursing expenses. These cover the medical costs the deceased may have incurred before their passing, from treatments to hospitalizations.
- Pain, suffering, and mental anguish. This addresses the emotional and psychological distress caused by the loss.
- Punitive damages. These get awarded in situations where the defendant’s actions were particularly malicious or reckless. It’s not about compensation but punishing the defendant and deterring similar behaviors.
How Hassett & George, P.C. Can Help With Your Claim
The abrupt loss of a loved one is a profound and disorienting experience. The whirlwind of emotions and tasks can leave families overwhelmed. That’s where Hassett & George, P.C. steps in as a pillar of strength and guidance. With our seasoned wrongful death attorney in Hartford, we’re ready to offer comprehensive support every step of the way.
Investigating Your Loved One’s Death
Understanding the circumstances surrounding a tragic loss is crucial. Our team dives deep, piecing together the events that led to your loved one’s death. We strive to discover the truth and hold accountable those responsible by thoroughly investigating all aspects of the incident.
Explaining Your Legal Rights
The legal jargon can be confusing, especially during such a distressing period. We’re here to demystify the legal process for you. Our team will walk you through your rights, outlining potential routes for justice and ensuring you’re informed at every turn.
Seeking Financial Compensation
While no amount of money can compensate for the profound loss of a loved one, obtaining financial compensation can help with the immediate aftermath of such a tragedy. With our expertise, we’ll relentlessly advocate for the compensation you deserve — for medical expenses, loss of earnings, or emotional distress.
At Hassett & George, P.C., our commitment goes beyond legal representation. We endeavor to be a compassionate companion during your journey, understanding the gravity of your loss and fighting tenaciously for justice. Let us shoulder the legal burdens so you can focus on healing and remembrance.
Resources for Hartford Residents Who Have Lost a Loved One
The ache of losing a loved one in Hartford is an experience unlike any other. Grief can be consuming, and at times, it might seem that the weight of sorrow will never lift. During these heart-wrenching moments, it’s essential to remember that you don’t have to journey through this pain alone. Many in the Hartford community have taken brave steps toward healing by seeking professional help. Therapists and counselors specialize in aiding individuals to navigate the complexities of grief, offering solace, understanding, and coping strategies. Below are some of Hartford’s notable grief counseling resources that can be a beacon during these trying times:
With an approach encompassing the whole person — mind, body, and spirit — the West Hartford Holistic Counseling offers specialized grief counseling in West Hartford, CT. Their compassionate therapists are skilled in helping individuals. Additionally, recognizing the unique nature of everyone’s grief journey, Thriveworks offers grief counseling tailored to the individual’s needs. Their experienced therapists provide a supportive environment where one can openly express their feelings and learn strategies to cope with their loss.
If you want something beyond traditional therapy, Life Coaching and Therapy integrates innovative techniques that help individuals rebuild and rediscover joy. Their holistic approach to healing caters to the diverse needs of those grieving, ensuring a comprehensive healing process. Finally, dedicated to creating a safe space for those in pain, Calissa’s Counseling Services offers individualized therapy sessions. Their empathetic counselors are skilled in guiding individuals through the tumultuous waves of grief, ensuring they don’t feel isolated.
Compassionate Attorneys in Hartford Who Will Fight for Your Rights
At Hassett & George, P.C., we understand the immeasurable pain of losing a loved one due to another’s negligence. Our commitment is to ensure justice gets served by securing the rightful compensation for your loss. We meticulously assess the financial implications of your loved one’s untimely departure, considering factors like potential future earnings, lost services, medical and burial expenses, and the profound pain and suffering endured by the family.
We are here to advocate for your rights, regardless of whether your loved one had children or the extent of your financial reliance on them. Our dedicated wrongful death attorneys in Hartford will walk you through every step, ensuring you understand your rights and fighting hard to get you the compensation you deserve.
Your grief is valid, and while no amount of money can truly compensate for your loss, Hassett & George, P.C. is determined to stand by your side and champion your cause. Reach out to our esteemed team today, and let us shoulder the legal burden while you focus on healing.
In addition to Hartford our legal team also serves: Simsbury, Glastonbury, New Britain, Bridgeport, Waterbury, Danbury, Norwalk, Manchester, Windsor, Farmington, Windsor Locks, Wethersfield, Rocky Hill, Avon, Bloomfield, Bristol, Enfield, Newington, South Windsor, Southington, Plainville and more.