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Wrongful Death Lawyer in Albany, GA

Holding People Responsible for Negligence and Misconduct

The death of a family member or loved one is perhaps the most tragic and devastating of all personal injuries. These terrible incidents affect entire families both financially and emotionally, and the effects can be felt long after the event occurs. When a person loses his or her life through someone else’s recklessness, negligence, or even a deliberate act, that person’s family may have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit. At the Law Offices of William F. Underwood, III, P.C., our Albany wrongful death attorney has helped many clients seek justice by holding responsible parties accountable for their actions.

Call (229) 999-4476 today to learn more about seeking justice for your Albany, GA wrongful death case.

Wrongful Death in Georgia

Whenever a person dies as a result of a crime or other unlawful behavior, the result is a wrongful death, and it can arise from a number of causes. When a wrongful death occurs in Georgia, the decedent's surviving family may file a lawsuit against the responsible party or parties in pursuit of compensation.

Wrongful death can occur as a result of:

Georgia's Wrongful Death Statute of Limitations

Georgia's statute of limitations places a deadline on how long a deceased person's family or estate representative has to file a wrongful death claim in court. In most cases, you only have 2 years from the date of death to commence wrongful death actions in Georgia. If you file a claim after this deadline has expired, the courts will likely refuse to hear your case and you will likely lose your right to seek legal recourse.

This deadline can sometimes be extended, or legally known as "tolled," in situations where:

  • The deceased person's estate has not been probated
  • There is a pending criminal case related to the same events as the wrongful death case

Since adhering to this statute of limitations can make or break your case, it is crucial to act promptly and retain skilled legal guidance as soon as possible to ensure your family's rights are protected.

Who Can Sue for Wrongful Death in Georgia?

A wrongful death lawsuit can help families receive compensation for these effects. However, Georgia law limits who can file a wrongful death lawsuit and under what circumstances.

According to Georgia's wrongful death act O.C.G.A. § 51-4-2:

  • The surviving spouse of the decedent receives first priority for filing a wrongful death claim, and he or she is the only person who can file it.
  • If the decedent left surviving children, the spouse must bring the claim on their behalf and share any damages that are awarded. However, regardless of the number of children, the spouse is entitled to receive no less than one-third of the total compensation.
  • If the deceased was divorced, then any surviving children may file a claim jointly.
  • If the deceased individual does not have a surviving spouse or children, the wrongful death claim may be filed by the surviving parents of the deceased or the designated representative of the deceased’s estate.
  • If the estate representative files the claim, all damages will be held in the estate to be properly distributed to the next-of-kin.

What Kind of Compensation Could You Obtain?

When a wrongful death occurs, the family is placed under tremendous strain. Along with funeral costs and any medical costs that were incurred, they are tasked with seeking justice for the responsible party. At the Law Offices of William F. Underwood, III, P.C., we may be able to help. During our years of practice, we have helped families obtain the compensation needed for lost lifetime income, funeral and medical expenses, and damages for mental and emotional pain and suffering.

Our Experience

Through our experience and thorough familiarity with Georgia wrongful death law, the Law Offices of William F. Underwood, III, P.C. make a strong ally in fighting for justice. While no amount of money can compensate for the death of a family member, we will fight to make sure our clients receive the financial compensation they are due. It is our belief that when justice is done, it can be more valuable in bringing comfort and closure to families who have experienced these losses than compensation alone.

Call the Law Offices of William F. Underwood, III, P.C. today by dialing (229) 999-4476.

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