Wrongful Death Lawsuits in Missouri & Kansas
The legal ground for filing a wrongful death claim arises when a person dies in circumstances that are - like the name suggests - wrongful. In particular, a wrongful death claim arises when a person dies due to the negligent, reckless or intentional acts of another person or company.
It is important to realize that not all unexpected deaths give rise to a wrongful death claim in Kansas or Missouri. If you lost a loved one and believe it may have been caused by the negligence or wrongful acts of another, you should request a free consultation from an experienced Kansas City wrongful death lawyer.
Defining a Wrongful Death in Missouri & Kansas
To successfully assert a wrongful death claim in Missouri or Kansas, a person must have died due to the negligent, reckless or intentional conduct of another person or business.
A wrongful death attorney will review your case and determine whether another party may be held liable for your loved one's death.
Depending on the type of wrongful death case and circumstances, a variety of individuals or businesses may be at fault. For instance, an impaired or drunk driver, a careless property owner, or a manufacturer who produces a deadly and defective product are all potential parties to a wrongful death lawsuit.
Types of Wrongful Death Cases in Missouri & Kansas
Some of the common types of wrongful deaths include:
- fatal car accidents, motorcycle accidents, semi-truck crashes, bicycle accidents or pedestrian accidents;
- fatal slip, trip and falls or fatal injuries on dangerous properties
- medical malpractice, including nursing home abuse and neglect;
- dangerous drugs; and
- defective products.
As with any sort of negligence case, you have to consider the laws of comparative negligence. If the deceased contributed to their own death, it can reduce or even bar the family from asserting a wrongful death claim. The laws regarding comparative fault are different in Kansas and Missouri. In general, the rules of comparative fault are harsher in Kansas, but this area of law can be complicated and will depend on the facts of your case, so we recommend you speak with an experienced wrongful death attorney for a full evaluation.
How to File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Missouri or Kansas
A wrongful death lawsuit runs much like a personal injury case progresses. You should first contact a Kansas City wrongful death attorney to discuss your legal options and become familiar with the legal process of your case. You should do this in a timely manner because there are certain deadlines, known as "statutes of limitations," that apply wrongful death claims, and if you do not pursue your case and file it in court, your right to compensation will be barred.
After investigating your case, your attorney will be able to advise you if you should submit a pre-trial demand to the responsible party or their insurer. Alternatively, he or she may simply advise that the lawsuit should be prepared and formally filed with the court. After a lawsuit is filed, the defendant will be notified and have a deadline to respond.
Your attorney should be focused on discovering and gathering the evidence necessary to prove that the other party was at fault for the death of your loved one. You also will need evidence of the damages you seek to recover, such as medical bills, lost wages, and the effect the loss of your loved one will have on your family's personal and financial futures.
A wrongful death trial is usually heard by a jury who will listen to both sides and consider the evidence and testimony presented. After review of the evidence and deliberation, the jury will present a verdict. If the defendant is found at fault for the death, a judgment amount will be awarded to the family of the deceased.
The award may include a variety of kinds of compensation for your losses. Your wrongful death lawyer should review your situation and advise you on what types of damages you may seek to recover and can help document these figures so they may be properly presented in court.
Filing a Kansas or Missouri Wrongful Death Claim
There's a lot more to know about filing a Kansas or Missouri wrongful death claim or wrongful death lawsuit than just having a death resulting from negligence. Only certain family members can file the claim or lawsuit, and the beneficiaries of the settlement may differ depending on the deceased's family situation and the laws that apply.
When you have lost a loved one because of negligence and are seeking to file a wrongful death claim or lawsuit, you should first consult with a wrongful death attorney. Your attorney will be able to help you every step of the way to make sure your case is handled properly and your family is fairly represented.
Contact Our Kansas City Wrongful Death Attorney
You don't have to deal with insurance companies and paperwork alone when you're looking to file a wrongful death case. Our Kansas City wrongful death attorney fights for survivors in the Kansas City area and throughout Missouri and Kansas and helps family members through the legal process of wrongful death cases.
Before you go any further, get a free consultation with an experienced wrongful death attorney. Discussing your situation with a trustworthy attorney can save you time and effort in pursuing your case, so please contact us today at 816-203-0143.