Filing a Wrongful Death Claim
June 13, 2022
Losing a family member can be a very painful and heartbreaking experience, especially if it was caused by another person's wrongful actions. Fortunately, wrongful death laws in Kentucky allow the decedent's surviving loved ones to hold the liable parties responsible and pursue damages for such an untimely loss. An experienced Kentucky personal injury attorney can enlighten you about the state’s wrongful death claim process and help you seek the financial justice you deserve for your loss.
At The Berger Firm, we are dedicated to offering experienced legal guidance, support, and compassionate representation to families of wrongful death victims during such a grieving period. Our trusted attorneys can investigate all of the surrounding facts of your unique circumstances thoroughly, explore your possible options to file a wrongful death claim, and help you seek rightful financial compensation for your loss. We're proud to serve clients in Covington, Kentucky, and surrounding areas across Greater Cincinnati or Northern Kentucky, including Newport and Florence.
Why File a Wrongful Death Claim?
Wrongful death law applies in tort cases where a defendant's negligent, careless, or wrongful conduct causes the victim's death. Under Kentucky law – Kentucky Revised Statute Section 411.130 – "Whenever the death of a person results from an injury inflicted by the negligence or wrongful act of another, damages may be recovered for the death from the person who caused it, or whose agent or servant caused it."
The purpose of a wrongful death action is to hold the responsible party liable for such a preventable death and compensate the surviving family members of the decedent for their unexpected loss. Also, a monetary compensation obtained through a wrongful death claim can give the deceased person's surviving loved ones a much-needed financial boost to cover funeral and burial expenses, amounts the decedent would have earned as income, and outstanding medical bills before the victim's death.
In addition, filing a wrongful death claim can help hold the liable party responsible and ensure that such an unfortunate incident doesn't happen to other families or people.
What Constitutes Wrongful Death in Kentucky?
According to Kentucky law, a wrongful death claim may be brought when "the death of a person results from an injury inflicted by the negligence or wrongful act of another." To assert a wrongful death claim in Kentucky, the plaintiff must show that:
The defendant owed a legal duty of care to the victim.
The defendant breached the duty of care
A death occurred
The breach caused the accident or injuries, which led to the victim's death.
The surviving loved ones suffered actual damages from the death
A skilled Kentucky personal injury attorney can help you understand how to file your wrongful death claims, who can file, and the time limit for filing.
Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations for wrongful death claims in the Commonwealth of Kentucky is one (1) year. Therefore, an action to recover damages for wrongful death must be brought within one year of the date of the victim's death.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Kentucky?
Under Kentucky law, only the personal representative of the decedent's estate is allowed to bring the wrongful death action. If the decedent died without a valid will – dying intestate – the court will appoint a person to act as the personal representative. All damages recovered from the wrongful death claim will be for the benefit of the decedent's surviving loved ones.
The following damages may be recovered by filing a wrongful death claim in Kentucky:
Medical expenses incurred before the victim's death
Lost income or wages and benefits
Loss of consortium
Funeral and burial expenses
Lost care, support, guidance, or counsel
Lost love or companionship
Lost earning capacity
Punitive damages to further punish the at-fault party if the death was caused by their willful or gross negligence.
An experienced attorney can help file the wrongful death claims and attempt to seek the maximum possible compensation for your loss.
Skilled Legal Guidance
The death of a family member can be overwhelming, and such a sudden loss can affect your mental, emotional, and financial health. However, you don't have to suffer the pain, challenges, and financial liability all by yourself. Therefore, you need to act quickly and retain an experienced personal injury attorney for skilled legal guidance and to assist with your wrongful death claim.
For over 50 years, our trusted attorneys have devoted their careers to advocating for the legal rights of clients in their wrongful death claims. Our extensive knowledge of the laws addressing liability in wrongful death cases can help guide you through the often complex legal proceedings.
As your legal counsel, we will fight compassionately to protect your family's best interests and help you hold those responsible for your loved one's death accountable. In addition, we will walk you through the wrongful death claim process and help pursue fair financial compensation to cover funeral and burial expenses, outstanding medical bills, lost wages, loss of consortium, and other potential damages.
If you have lost a loved one, spouse, child, parent, or close relative to another person's wrongful act, you may recover wrongful death damages. Contact The Berger Firm today to schedule a simple consultation with skilled wrongful death attorneys. Our reliable legal team can offer you the experienced legal guidance, support, and vigorous representation you need to pursue fair compensation for your loss. We're proud to serve clients in Covington, Kentucky, and surrounding areas across Greater Cincinnati or Northern Kentucky, including Newport and Florence.