Boise Wrongful Death Attorney
Experienced Boise Wrongful Death Attorneys
Even as you are grieving the loss of a loved one due to someone else’s wrongdoing, you likely have many other concerns adding to the emotional toll and stress. Funeral and burial costs can be astronomical, and there are expenses related to the deceased’s final affairs. As the financial issues mount, you may wonder how you and your family can move forward when the future is so uncertain. Idaho law does allow you to recover compensation from the party responsible for your loved one’s death, but wrongful death cases are complex if you do not have a legal background.
The wrongful death lawyers at Hansen Injury Law understand the struggles you face after losing a family member, which is why we are dedicated to providing strong legal support during these difficult times. No matter what circumstances led to your loved one’s passing, we will fight to obtain the compensation you and your family deserve. Our attorneys have extensive knowledge and experience in wrongful death cases, so we protect your interests in settlement negotiations or in court. We have represented many clients in Boise, ID and throughout Ada County, so you can feel confident your claim is in good hands.
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Protecting Your Interests During These Difficult Times
Under Idaho law, certain individuals may have a claim when a person is killed due to the wrongful act or neglect of another individual. A wrongful death case relates to the losses that surviving family members sustain after the decedent’s passing; this claim is separate from the losses of the victim. Therefore, it is necessary to prove:
- The party responsible for the victim’s death had a duty to act reasonably under the circumstances, so as to not cause a risk of harm to others;
- The responsible party breached this duty of care by acting negligently, recklessly, or intentionally;
- The breach of duty caused the victim’s death; and,
- The deceased left behind surviving family members who sustained losses due to the death of the victim, for which they are entitled to compensation.
The statute requires that heirs or the personal representative of the deceased’s estate file a claim for wrongful death. A personal representative is a person designated by the decedent’s will to manage his or her affairs; where there is no will, a court may appoint a personal representative to handle the estate assets. For purposes of the wrongful death statute, “heirs” is a legal term defined as:
- Those who would inherit the property of the decedent according to the rules of intestate success, which include the surviving spouse, children, parents, siblings, and further distant relatives; and,
- Those individuals who were partly or entirely dependent upon the person who died, which may include some blood and adopted relatives, and children born out of wedlock.
Common Scenarios Involving Wrongful Death Claims
Wrongful death cases arise in many different contexts involving the negligent, reckless, or intentional actions of another person. The statistics on fatalities related to misconduct is shocking.
- Car, Truck, and Motorcycle Accidents: An average of over 37,000 people die in traffic-related crashes every year in the US. Truck collisions tend to cause more fatalities than those involving only passenger cars, mainly because of the size disparity between the vehicles. Motorcycle accidents are often fatal because the rider is not protected by the metal shell offered by a passenger vehicle.
- Medical Malpractice: Experts at Johns Hopkins report that more than 250,000 victims died every year due to medical errors, making medical malpractice the third-leading cause of death in the U.S. Mistakes in delayed or incorrect diagnosis, prescriptions, surgical errors, and birth issues all fall under the umbrella of medical malpractice.
- Defective Products: Manufacturers and other entities involved with bringing a product to market have a duty to ensure the item is safe for consumers. Still, defective products cause numerous fatalities every year
- Premises Accidents: Fatalities may occur when a property owner does not keep the premises safe for members of the public, such as from slippery surfaces, falling objects, broken physical features, and other dangerous conditions.
- Criminal Activity: Murder, manslaughter, and other forms of homicide are crimes in Idaho, but a conviction does nothing to compensate the victim’s loved ones for their losses. It is necessary to file a wrongful death case in civil court to recover damages.
- Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect: The National Council on Aging estimates that one in 10 Americans over age 60 have experienced some form of elder abuse; almost 10 percent of nursing homes cited for neglect or abuse issues had violations that either posed a risk of death or actually did cause death.
- Work-Related Accidents: Deaths due to workplace accidents are comparatively low when looking at other types of incidents where negligence causes fatalities; according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 36 workers killed in on-the-job incidents in 2015. While workers’ compensation laws offer benefits, there are some situations where filing a wrongful death case is appropriate.
You May Be Entitled to Compensation for Your Losses
If you have proper standing as an heir or personal representative, you may be able to recover compensation for your damages, which are expressed as economic and non-economic losses.
- Economic Losses: These include costs that are readily ascertainable, such as:
- Medical costs for the deceased’s final illness;
- Funeral and burial expenses; and,
- Loss of financial support and the value of the decedent’s contribution to the household.
- Non-Economic Losses: These damages are more subjective in nature, including the loss of care, comfort, and society. Idaho law does place a statutory cap on non-economic damages, in an amount that changes annually.
Contact a Wrongful Death Attorney in Boise to Discuss Your Case
If you lost a family member and want to know more about your legal options in a wrongful death case, please contact the Boise wrongful death attorneys at Hansen Injury Law to schedule a free consultation. We serve clients in Boise, Meridian, and throughout Ada County, ID, and we are committed to helping you obtain the compensation you deserve for a wrongful death claim.