Compensation for Reckless or Negligent Actions
Each state has a set of laws governing wrongful death claims. Indiana is no exception and has enacted a series of statutes to help ensure that the family members of accident victims who lost their lives as a result of someone else’s negligent or reckless conduct are compensated for their monetary losses.
Although collecting damages can never replace the loss of a loved one, it can go a long way towards helping a family pay off medical debt and focus on grieving, while they begin the long process of recovery. Unfortunately, the procedural rules that come with filing a wrongful death claim in Indiana are complex, so if you recently lost a loved one in an accident for which he or she was not at fault, it is critical to contact a wrongful death attorney in Fort Wayne who can explain your legal rights and obligations.
Who Can File A Wrongful Death Claim?
Just because a person is a relative of a deceased victim does not mean that he or she automatically has standing to file a claim on the loved one’s behalf. This is because Indiana law only permits the personal representative of a deceased person’s estate to file this type of claim in court. Fortunately, if a judge orders a defendant to pay damages, those funds can be awarded to the deceased’s spouse, children, or dependents. In the event that more than one party is eligible to receive wrongful death damages, the court will step in and decide how the total will be divided.
The filing rules for cases involving the death of a child are a bit different, as these types of claims can only be filed by one or both of the deceased minor’s parents. If the parents are divorced, then the claim can only be filed by the parent who had legal custody of the child prior to his or her death.