Wrongful Death Claims After a Crime
When Families Need Justice After a Florida Crime, Our Wrongful Death Attorneys Are Here to Help
If You Have Lost a Loved One to Violence or Other Criminal Conduct, You Should Speak with a Lawyer about Your Family’s Legal Rights
No one deserves to lose their life to someone else’s criminal conduct, and no family deserves to endure the tragedy of losing a loved one too soon. While Florida’s criminal justice system should ensure that the perpetrator is held accountable, if you have lost a loved one to crime, you will need to take legal action on your own to secure just compensation for your family member’s death.
There are various circumstances in which surviving family members can recover financial compensation for a wrongful death resulting from a crime. While this might involve filing a claim against the perpetrator, it will more likely involve filing a claim against a business that could have – and should have – done more to prevent your loved one’s death. When you contact us, our Florida wrongful death lawyers will assess all options for securing just compensation, and we will do everything we can to seek justice on your family’s behalf.
When Can You File a Florida Wrongful Death Claim After a Death Caused By Crime?
All types of fatal crimes can support claims for financial compensation. This includes everything from first-degree murder to vehicular homicide. When a person is charged with a crime, that person can face penalties, including fines and prison time. However, to recover financial compensation, eligible family members must file a claim in civil court.
Technically, Florida law requires a wrongful death claim to be filed by the victim’s personal representative. However, spouses, children, parents, and other dependents can all receive compensation. Some examples of circumstances in which eligible family members can recover financial compensation for a wrongful death caused by crime include:
- Fatal Vehicle Accident – If your loved one was killed in a car accident, your family could seek compensation through auto insurance, and your loved one’s personal representative may be able to file various other claims as well.
- A Bar or Restaurant Overserved a Drunk Driver – If your loved one was killed by a drunk driver who had been drinking at a bar or restaurant, the establishment could be liable for your loved one’s death.
- Fatal Assault on Business Premises – If your loved one was assaulted or murdered on business premises, your family may have a claim against the business for negligent security or another form of negligence.
- Fatal Assault By an Individual – In addition to pursuing a claim against a third-party business, your family may be able to file a lawsuit against the perpetrator as well. With regard to suing the perpetrator, a key issue will be whether the perpetrator has the assets required to provide just compensation to your family.
Explaining the Connection Between a Civil and Criminal Case When a Loved One is Killed
Other times, a wrongful death case can be brought after a family member died as a result of an intentional act of violence, such as murder. It is often hard for family members to wrap their minds around the reality that their loved one was victimized in such a manner. After undergoing the stresses of the perpetrator’s criminal prosecution, families are often left feeling that their ordeal will never end.
This is especially the case when the person who killed your loved one escapes conviction.
A wrongful death attorney in Florida will help you file a civil lawsuit against the person who caused the death of your loved one through violence. You are entitled to pursue a case for damages against the person responsible for your family member’s death, whether they were convicted of the murder or not.
The level of proof necessary to convict a person of a crime is extremely high. While a solid case is still needed to prove wrongful death, the level of proof for your case for civil damages is significantly lower. In a criminal case, guilt must be established beyond a reasonable doubt. In a civil case like a wrongful death lawsuit, the family must show that the preponderance of the evidence points to guilt.
Schedule a Free Consultation With a Florida Wrongful Death Attorney
Regardless of what happened, you should speak with an attorney, and we encourage you to contact us 24/7 for a free, no-obligation consultation. To speak with one of our experienced attorneys in confidence, please call 800-780-8607 or tell us how we can reach you online today.