Have you lost a loved one unexpectedly? We can help. The Maderal Byrne & Furst PLLC law firm is a team of Coral Gables wrongful death lawyers. See what you may receive in compensation and how our lawyers assist families.
Losing a loved one is difficult. You may wonder if the death was preventable. You may already know that someone else is responsible for your family member’s death.
When a wrongful death occurs, surviving family members may have a legal claim. Our team of former federal prosecutors can represent you in the claims process. With more than 30 years of legal experience and courtroom trial experience, we are equipped to protect your rights and pursue compensation.
Serving Families of Victims in Coral Gables
When you unexpectedly lose a loved one, you have important questions.
- What happened to cause my loved one’s death?
- Is someone else legally responsible? Why?
- Do I qualify to receive financial compensation?
- What is a wrongful death claim? How does it bring justice for my loved one?
- How will I cover my loved one’s final expenses and my own financial needs going forward?
- How do I receive financial compensation?
- What is my case worth?
- Is my case strong? What are the strengths and weaknesses?
- Should I bring a claim?
- How can your wrongful death lawyers help me?
Let our lawyers answer your questions. We can give you a personalized review of your wrongful death case. It is our goal to seek justice and the monetary payment you deserve.
The Maderal Byrne & Furst wrongful death lawyers in Coral Gables have been leaders in complex litigation on a national level. Our commitment to the rights of individuals and families is what drives us as we pursue your legal rights.
Representing residents and visitors in Coral Gables
Our offices are in Coral Gables, Florida. We take cases throughout the state. Whether you are a year-round resident, seasonal resident, or visitor, your legal rights are important. Our law firm handles cases of all complexities and circumstances. Our clients are both adults and children. No matter your situation, we want to help.
Contact us today to learn more about your rights following the death of a loved one.
Understanding Wrongful Death Claims
What is a wrongful death claim?
A wrongful death claim is a legal claim based on someone causing the death of another. It is a civil claim that seeks financial compensation. Family members are the beneficiaries when a close family member dies because of negligence, recklessness, or intentional conduct of another. The wrongful death claim addresses the right to compensation because another party is at fault for the death of the victim.
What is the purpose of a wrongful death claim?
Florida Statutes § 768.17 says that the purpose of Florida’s wrongful death law is to shift the losses resulting from wrongful death off the survivors of the decedent and onto the wrongdoer. When a wrongful death occurs, the law allows the survivors to claim compensation from the party or parties legally responsible for causing the death.
How do you prove a wrongful death claim?
To prove a wrongful death claim, you present evidence. The evidence must prove each of the following:
- Another party has legal liability. Negligence is the most common standard, but recklessness, intentional misconduct, and strict liability may apply.
- The other party’s conduct caused a wrongful death. The defendant’s wrongful conduct must be the reason that the victim’s death occurred. Our lawyers can help you understand legal causation.
- Damages resulted. Each family member may itemize their losses and seek compensation. The personal representative brings the case, and the family members are the beneficiaries.
In addition to these steps, there are procedural requirements. For example, all potential beneficiaries must be identified in the complaint. Our lawyers understand these rules and how to build your claim.
Who can be a beneficiary of a wrongful death claim?
Those who can be a beneficiary of a wrongful death claim include:
- Other dependents
What can I recover by bringing a wrongful death claim?
Some types of losses that you can recover by bringing a wrongful death claim are:
- Lost services and support from the date of injury until death, plus interest
- Future loss of support and services
- Loss of spousal companionship and protection
- Mental pain and suffering
- Loss of parenting instruction and guidance
- Medical or funeral expenses, if paid by a survivor
The beneficiary’s relationship with the victim is important. The case examines resources they would have contributed to the surviving family member. Life expectancies of survivors and the victim are considered, and whether children were minors at the time of the victim’s death.
In addition, the decedent’s personal representative may recover on behalf of the estate. They may recover loss of earnings minus support provided to survivors. Projected net loss of accumulation of the estate and medical and funeral expenses may be claimed, if applicable.
Wrongful Death Settlements And Judgments
While you are mourning the loss of your loved one, it can be hard to think about a legal claim. When you work with our team, you have a neutral and objective team working on your case. You have a level playing field with the insurance companies and corporations.
What factors matter in wrongful death settlements?
The factors that matter in a wrongful death settlement are:
- How strong is the case for compensation? Is it clear that the defendant is liable for what happened?
- What are the losses that the family has sustained? What damages are allowable under the law?
- What resources are available to pay compensation? Are there insurance policies that cover what happened, or does the defense have the resources to pay a judgment?
At the heart of a wrongful death, settlement is what the victim deserves in compensation and the proof that the defense is liable to pay it. Damages are specific to the losses that the family has suffered because of the death of their loved one. Factors include:
- The age of the victim
- Education and training
- Income and work history
- What the person provided to family, both financially and relationally
- Medical and funeral expenses
Of course, it’s impossible to know how the victim’s life might have played out. Courts rely on various indicators to understand what the victim and their family lost. All wrongful death claims appropriately value the importance of a person’s life, but each determination is specific to the family’s situation.
To learn more about what factors may matter in your case, we invite you to have a personalized consultation with a Coral Gables wrongful death attorney from our legal team.
Is there a wrongful death damages cap?
In Florida, there is no wrongful death compensatory damages cap against non-government defendants. However, a wrongful death compensatory damages cap of $200,000 per incident applies if the claim is against a unit of government.
Will my wrongful death case go to trial?
Most injury cases, including wrongful death cases, don’t go to trial. Building a strong case and understanding the value of the case allows many plaintiffs to reach a settlement.
Because of the high dollar amounts involved, wrongful death claims may be more likely to go to trial than other injury cases. But you don’t have to worry – when you work with our wrongful death attorneys, you have an experienced team of litigators representing you. We have conducted trials with great success, including in high-dollar cases when our clients were counting on us. When we represent you, if your case goes to trial, rest assured you will have your team of lawyers working for you at every step.
What is the penalty for wrongful death?
A wrongful death claim is a civil claim, and the penalty is money. A defendant in a wrongful death claim can’t be sent to jail, although they may face criminal charges brought by the state for the same conduct.
What Can Our Lawyers Do for You?
At Maderal Byrne & Furst, our legal team can begin work on your case immediately. When we work on your claim, we will:
- Investigate what occurred and determine legal liability
- File your case, preparing any legal documents necessary
- Assess the case for issues and questions that may be especially important
- Address any legal motions filed by the other party
- Prove your damages and follow the needed steps to claim them
- Answer your questions and provide guidance
- Handle the legal claim in full, including at trial or negotiating a settlement
- Customize your case plan to your goals and the specifics of your situation
Hiring us as your Coral Gables injury lawyer means having a skilled legal team that fights for you. We have represented clients in multi-million dollar claims. Your legal matter is so important. That’s why we work diligently for your interests from start to finish.
Talk to a Coral Gables Wrongful Death Lawyer Today
Consultations with our team at Maderal Byrne & Furst are always free. There is no obligation. We value our time talking to prospective clients and explaining your rights.
It might be your first time contacting a lawyer. Just reach out by calling, emailing, sending a message, or stopping by our offices. Get the legal representation – and the compensation – that you deserve after losing a loved one. Contact us today.