When is a death considered wrongful?

Any time someone dies, loved ones are left devastated and often confused about what to do. If the death was caused by another person's actions, they may wonder if a wrongful death lawsuit could be pursued. It is important to note that not every death is considered a wrongful death. We have put together a list of examples in which a person’s death could be deemed wrongful.

Here are some instances when a wrongful death lawsuit could be pursued:

  • Automobile accidents. When a person dies as a result of someone else’s careless and unsafe driving—whether the negligent act was intentional or accidental—the deceased’s family may have the right to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit. Wrongful death lawsuits can also be pursued against car manufacturers for vehicle defects.
  • Truck accidents. When a truck crash occurs because the driver failed to get the proper amount of sleep or took some other negligent action and someone dies as a result, a wrongful death lawsuit may be pursued. This is also the case if the deadly crash occurred due to improper cargo loading, poor vehicle maintenance, or other careless acts by employees of the trucking company.
  • Bicycle and pedestrian accidents. When a bicyclist or pedestrian dies as a result of a driver’s carelessness or recklessness, it is possible a wrongful death lawsuit could be pursued. A driver could be guilty of speeding and reckless driving, running a red light, texting and driving, or driving drunk or drugged—any of these acts could be the basis of a wrongful death suit.
  • Medical malpractice. When a patient dies as a result of a surgical error, misdiagnosis, failure to diagnose a health condition, or medication mishap, a medical professional may be guilty of failing to provide the patient with the required standard of care. Therefore, medical negligence would be the basis for bringing a medical malpractice lawsuit.
  • Products liability. When a defective product contributes to the death of someone, the family of the victim may bring a wrongful death lawsuit against the manufacturer of the product or sometimes even the designer, distributor, and seller of the product. A wrongful death lawsuit may be based on a defective manufacturing process, poor and unsafe design, or failure to warn of potential injuries or death.

Any time someone else’s negligence contributes to the death of a person, it is likely that a wrongful death lawsuit could be pursued. If you believe your loved one died as a result of someone else’s actions, it is worth it to have an attorney who is knowledgeable in medical malpractice law look at your case.