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Layton Wrongful Death Lawyer

A Brief Summary of the Following Article:

  • Filing Eligibility: Only specific family members or representatives in Utah can file a wrongful death claim, underlining the importance of consulting with a Feller & Wendt attorney for guidance and ensuring timely action within the statute limitations.
  • Comprehensive Damages: Utah’s wrongful death claims encompass economic, non-economic, and punitive damages, aiming to holistically address both the tangible and intangible impacts of loss, ensuring families receive the compensation they deserve for their multifaceted suffering.
  • Proving Negligence: Establishing liability in Utah necessitates demonstrating negligence, requiring a detailed account of how the at-fault party’s breach of duty directly resulted in death, with Feller & Wendt adept at identifying liable parties ranging from drivers to property owners.
  • Expert Advocacy: Partnering with Feller & Wendt means engaging compassionate legal experts who prioritize collecting crucial evidence, navigating claim filings, and negotiating just settlements, allowing families to concentrate on healing while they champion the rights of the deceased.

When one person or party causes an injury to another party through negligence, the injured party can seek compensation for their losses through a personal injury claim. If the victim dies, their surviving family will need to pursue a wrongful death claim instead. Wrongful death claims are essentially personal injury claims filed on behalf of the deceased, but there are a few key differences between these two types of claims. 

Utah follows strict requirements when it comes to who may file a wrongful death claim, so it is important to consult a qualified Layton wrongful death lawyer. Schedule a free legal consultation with our team today to discuss your unique case and the best course of action for your family’s future. 

Utah’s Wrongful Death Statutes

Utah state law allows for surviving family members to file a wrongful death claim within two years of the date of death. If the party responsible for the death is a government entity, this window is only one year from the date of death. According to Utah Code § 78B-3-106, wrongful death is defined as any death resulting from a “wrongful act, neglect, or default” from another party. Such acts would typically lead to personal injury claims, but since the victim in these situations cannot represent his or her own interests in court after death, Utah allows for a decedent’s surviving spouse, child, or parent to file a wrongful death claim. 

This right extends to stepchildren under the age of 18 who were financially dependent on the decedent, as well as adoptive parents. Utah inheritance laws also allow for others to pursue wrongful death claims in special circumstances. For example, if the deceased individual has an estate, then a personal representative of the deceased’s estate may file a wrongful death claim in lieu of a family member.

Damages in Utah Wrongful Death Cases

In Utah, wrongful death cases allow for the recovery of various types of damages to compensate the survivors of the deceased for their loss. These damages are generally categorized into economic, non-economic, and, in some cases, punitive damages. Each category serves to address different aspects of the impact caused by the wrongful death, from tangible financial losses to the more intangible emotional distress experienced by the family members.

  • Economic Damages: These are intended to cover the quantifiable financial impacts of the death, including:
    • Lost wages and future earning capacity of the deceased
    • Medical expenses incurred prior to death
    • Funeral and burial costs
  • Non-economic Damages: Aimed at compensating for the non-monetary aspects of the loss, such as: 
    • Pain and suffering endured by the deceased before death
    • Loss of love, companionship, comfort, care, assistance, protection, and affection provided by the deceased 
    • Emotional distress of surviving family members
  • Punitive Damages: Although not awarded in every case, punitive damages may be considered if the defendant’s actions were particularly egregious or reckless. These are not meant to compensate the plaintiff but rather to punish the defendant and deter similar conduct in the future.

Understanding the full scope of damages you may be entitled to in a Utah wrongful death case is crucial for ensuring that justice is served and that families receive the comprehensive compensation they deserve. The Layton wrongful death lawyers at Feller & Wendt are adept at navigating these complexities, working tirelessly to secure a fair and just settlement that acknowledges the full extent of your loss.

Establishing Liability in a Wrongful Death Case in Utah

Establishing liability in a Utah wrongful death case hinges on demonstrating negligence, which is fundamentally defined as the failure to act with the level of care that someone of ordinary prudence would have exercised under the same circumstances. This involves proving that the at-fault party had a duty to the deceased, breached that duty through action or inaction, directly causing the death, and as a result, inflicted damages on the survivors or the estate of the deceased. The concept of negligence is central to wrongful death claims, serving as the legal basis for holding parties accountable for their actions or failures that lead to another’s untimely death.

Identifying and proving the at-fault party or parties is a critical step in pursuing a wrongful death claim in Utah. Possible at-fault parties in such cases might include:

  • Drivers in cases of fatal traffic accidents, where reckless or negligent driving is involved.
  • Medical professionals and healthcare facilities, in instances of medical malpractice leading to death.
  • Employers, particularly in cases where unsafe work environments or practices result in fatal accidents.
  • Manufacturers of defective products that cause death due to their failure or misuse.
  • Property owners, when deaths occur due to hazardous conditions on their premises that were not adequately addressed.

This comprehensive approach to establishing liability ensures that all entities whose negligence or misconduct contributed to the wrongful death are held accountable. Feller & Wendt’s experienced attorneys meticulously investigate every angle, leveraging their legal expertise to build a compelling case that accurately assigns responsibility for the loss suffered.

Why You Should Partner With a Compassionate Layton Wrongful Death Lawyer

While you and your family focus on the important issues, like grieving, our team of knowledgeable and compassionate Layton wrongful death attorneys will immediately get to work on the following pivotal aspects of your case:

Collecting Evidence

In order to demonstrate negligence has not only occurred, but directly resulted in the wrongful death of your family member, relevant information must be quickly collected and assessed to be used as evidence. For example, if your family member was involved in an automobile accident due to the reckless driving of another person, our team would work quickly to collect eyewitness accounts of the accident, police reports, detailed medical records, traffic security footage, and more.

Filing Your Claim

Utah currently has a two-year statute of limitations deadline for wrongful death claims. This means you have two years from the date of death to file a claim. There are certain exceptions to this rule, such as if a government agency is at fault for the accident. 

Our team is here to help you through every aspect of the claim process, including the filing and all necessary communications with the insurance company. This means we will handle the negotiation process for you and your family and ensure a worthy settlement offer is reached. If an agreement cannot be reached, we are even prepared to take your family member’s case to court and defend their rights in front of a judge. 

Feller & Wendt – Trusted Wrongful Death Attorneys in Layton, Utah

If you have recently lost a loved one in Layton, Utah in what you believe was a case of wrongful death, contact Feller & Wendt today to schedule a free consultation with a member of our team. We have more than 70 years of combined experience handling all types of civil claims for our clients, and we understand how deeply an untimely death can affect a family. Allow us to handle your legal concerns so you and your loved ones can focus on grieving and recovery. To schedule your free consultation today, please don’t hesitate to reach out by directly calling our office at (801) 499-5060 or by using our contact form.

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