Finding a Wrongful Death Lawyer in Odessa
Did you lose a loved one because of someone else’s negligence? We can help – reach out today to tell us your story. Consultations are free.
Losing a loved one is devastating, especially when their death is unexpected. Finding out that your family member’s death could be the fault of another person, company, or public entity only adds to the trauma.
If you believe another party’s negligence, recklessness, or intentional misconduct resulted in your loved one’s death, you could have the right to pursue a wrongful death claim. However, wrongful death claims can be complicated. Before pursuing a claim, it’s best to speak with an Odessa wrongful death lawyer.
The experienced legal team at Fadduol, Cluff, Hardy & Conaway P.C. has decades of experience assisting grieving families in Texas. We empathize with what your family is dealing with, and we understand your desire to hold the responsible parties accountable. Please get in touch with our Odessa wrongful death lawyers to learn how we can assist you.
Call (800) 433-2408 or send us an online message today for a free consultation.
What Is Considered Wrongful Death Under Texas Law?
Wrongful death is a death that results from another party’s negligence, carelessness, or intentional misconduct. Individuals, corporations, and government entities can be defendants in wrongful death actions. Certain surviving family members could have the right to pursue a wrongful death claim in Texas.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?
Every state has its own rules on who can file a wrongful death claim. In Texas, certain surviving family members have the legal right to file a wrongful death claim. Eligible family members include the surviving spouse, children, and parents of the deceased.
The estate representative can initiate a wrongful death claim on behalf of the family three months following the victim’s death, provided no family members have filed or expressly requested that no claim be initiated. If you have questions on who can bring a wrongful death lawsuit in Texas, speak with our Odessa wrongful death law firm.
Common Accidents that Lead to Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Some of the most common types of accidents and events that lead to a wrongful death claim include:
- Auto accidents,
- Large truck accidents,
- Motorcycle accidents,
- Pedestrian and bicycle accidents,
- Boating accidents,
- Slip and fall claims,
- Medical malpractice,
- Defective or dangerous products,
- Domestic violence,
- Work-related accidents,
- Dog bites, and
- Nursing home neglect and abuse.
If you do not see your specific accident type listed here, it doesn’t mean your family has no grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit. These are just some of the most common accidents we see.
Potential Types of Compensation in a Texas Wrongful Death Claim
Eligible family members could receive compensation for:
- Burial and funeral expenses, if a surviving family member paid for these expenses;
- Loss of inheritance;
- Loss of the decedent’s earnings;
- Loss of the decedent’s support, care, companionship, and guidance;
- Loss of decedent’s spousal, household, and parental services;
- Mental health care expenses for surviving family members; and
- Surviving family members’ emotional distress and mental anguish.
Determining how much compensation each family member receives can be complicated. If the case goes before a jury, the jury will decide various amounts.
If the case gets resolved through negotiations, the family members must agree to the settlement. If there is a disagreement on settlement amounts, family members may each need to hire separate wrongful death attorneys in Odessa, Texas.
Statute of Limitations for Wrongful Death Lawsuits in Texas
In general, surviving family members typically have two years from the date of death to file a lawsuit (Texas Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code Section 16.003). If you inadvertently miss the filing deadline, the court will very likely dismiss your claim.
It’s crucial to speak with an Odessa wrongful death attorney to confirm the correct filing deadline because some exceptions could alter the statute of limitations. For example, if family members don’t know the cause of death until weeks or months later, the filing deadline could be extended.
What Is a Survival Action?
The Survival Statute essentially allows the decedent’s personal injury lawsuit to survive their death.
In a survival action, you are suing on behalf of the victim and only for the victim’s damages. In a wrongful death claim, you are suing for your own losses. Sure, those losses are because of your loved one’s death—but they are your losses, not the decedent’s.
So if the decedent lived long enough to accumulate medical bills, lost time from work, property damage, or any other damages—but died before they could sue—their heirs or estate can pick that claim up and seek recovery for those damages. In some cases, heirs could have both a cause of action based on a survival claim and a wrongful death claim.
Frequently Asked Questions
Understandably, prospective clients have questions about wrongful death lawsuits. To help you prepare for your upcoming consultation, here are answers to some of the most common questions we receive.
Do I Have to Hire an Odessa Wrongful Death Lawyer?
No, the law does not require you to hire an attorney to pursue a wrongful death claim in Texas. However, given the complex nature of these claims, it’s in your best interest to hire one. If you try to pursue a claim independently, you could jeopardize your family’s potential compensation.
Can Siblings or Grandparents Recover Compensation in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Unfortunately, unmarried significant others, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents, grandchildren, and other distant family members are not eligible to bring a wrongful death claim in Texas.
How Much Does an Odessa Wrongful Death Attorney Cost?
We use the same billing structure for wrongful death claims as other types of personal injury claims. You will not pay an hourly billing rate or pay anything upfront. We represent clients on a contingency basis. That means we only get paid if we successfully recover compensation on your behalf.
Contact Our Wrongful Death Attorneys in Odessa, Texas, Today
If your loved one passed away due to another party’s negligence, don’t attempt to file a lawsuit without legal assistance. Instead, speak with an Odessa wrongful death lawyer at Fadduol, Cluff, Hardy & Conaway P.C. We have assisted grieving families in Texas for nearly 40 years.
We understand the need to hold the responsible parties accountable for their actions. Don’t jeopardize your case by trying to handle it independently. Let us put our decades of legal expertise to work for your family.
Contact our office online or call (800) 433-2408 to schedule an initial consultation to learn more.