A wrongful death attorney is one that specializes in claims filed because of an injury or accident that resulted in a death. These claims are filed on behalf of the survivors of those who have died, usually their immediate family members. Not every death would be grounds for a lawsuit but there are certain circumstances that would require or call for the services of a wrongful death attorney; consider three of those here.
1. Car accidents
Not every fatality suffered during a car accident would be grounds for a lawsuit but when there is negligence on the part of the other driver or anyone else that may have contributed to this death, a suit may be filed. For example, if the other driver was drunk or under the influence of drugs they may be sued for wrongful death. If a roadway did not have adequate warning signs and this contributed to the accident, the city may be sued. A bartender who over-served a driver as well as the bar at which he or she worked may also be liable.
2. Medical malpractice
If it's proven that a doctor was negligent in their duty in any way, a medical malpractice suit may be filed on behalf of a patient who has died. This can include actions the doctor took during a surgery or other procedure or it may include the negligence of a doctor in not ordering specific tests or diagnosing particular illnesses.
Filing a medical malpractice claim can also involve a suit against the hospital where a doctor worked and even against the manufacturer of certain medical equipment he or she may have used during surgeries and other procedures.
3. Use of defective products
If any type of defective product results in a death, that person's survivors may file a claim against the manufacturer of the product and anyone who knowingly used it without proper safety precautions. A defective product can be anything from a car that doesn't protect its passengers during an accident to an elevator that breaks and causes a fatality.
The person who suffered the fatality also does not need to be the one who actually used the product; for example, if a car's brakes fail because of a manufacturing defect and a driver hits a pedestrian, the pedestrian's family may have rights to file suit against the car's manufacturer.
In all cases it's best to speak with a wrongful death attorney (such as those from Sarkisian & Fleming) to ensure you understand how the law may apply in your particular case.