• Flowers on a tombstone in a graveyard.

What Is A Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

Losing a loved one is an awful experience.  This experience is made exponentially worse if you find out your loved one was killed due to someone else’s negligence or recklessness.  If you have lost someone due to someone else’s neglect or reckless actions, you are probably experiencing a great deal of pain and heartache, may not know where to turn, and may not know what to do.

I Think I can Bring a Wrongful Death Claim—What Should I Do?

The very first thing to do is to make sure you are taking time to address the important things in your life and give yourself time to grieve.  You will want to put people on notice of the potential claim as soon as possible, so they preserve evidence of any wrongdoing.  You also want to make sure you file a lawsuit timely.  This is where an attorney can help and fight for you and your family. In Texas, generally, you have two years from the date of your loved one’s death to file a wrongful death lawsuit.  There are few exceptions to this general rule.

Who Can Sue for Wrongful Death in Texas?

In order to bring a suit for wrongful death in Texas, you must have a relationship with the deceased that falls into one of the categories below:

  • Parent(s) of the loved one
  • Surviving spouse of the loved one
  • Child of the loved one

Depending on the circumstances, adopted children and adoptive parents may be eligible to bring a lawsuit on behalf of a lost loved one.  Texas law does not allow you to file a wrongful death claim if you are a sibling or other extended relative of the loved one.

I Fall Into One of The Categories Listed Above: What Sort of Claim Can I Bring if I Lost Someone Due to Someone Else’s Negligence or Reckless Actions?

You are allowed to bring a lawsuit under Chapter 71 of Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code, which allows you to file a wrongful death lawsuit if your loved one’s death was caused by “wrongful act, neglect, carelessness, unskillfulness, or default.”

What Sort of Wrongful Death Incidents can be Brought Under Chapter 71 of the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code?

You can bring claims for a variety of incidents, including:

  • 18-wheeler accidents
  • Bus accidents
  • Maritime accidents
  • Workplace accidents
  • Offshore accidents
  • Construction accidents
  • Oilfield accidents
  • Industrial accidents
  • Railroad accidents
  • Oil rig explosions

This is not an exhaustive list.  You can bring claims for other incidents.  If you think you may have a claim, contact one of the reputable and experienced attorneys at Morrow & Sheppard LLP.

What Am I Entitled to Under Chapter 71 of the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code:

You cannot bring your loved one back, but you are entitled to compensation on behalf of your loved one.  Compensation includes:

  • Lost income or lost earning capacity of the deceased
  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish and emotional trauma
  • Loss of support and companionship your loved one would have provided to you.
  • Medical and/or burial expenses
  • Punitive damages

If you think someone else’s negligence or recklessness caused a loved one to lose their life, notify the experienced and knowledgeable wrongful death lawyers at Morrow & Sheppard LLP. They are here to help, and they can fight for your right to receive the compensation you deserve. Call us at 800-489-2216 for a free, confidential consultation.

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