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Wrongful Death


“I was involved in a car accident which resulted in serious personal injury for me and the death of my husband. David has been exceptional in his devotion to my case. He has also been very meticulous in getting everything settled in the most beneficial way for me and my children. I would strongly recommend him.” 
(Sandra W. – personal injury client)

Wrongful DeathFirst of all, I am very sorry that you are reading this because it likely means you have lost a loved one. You are likely experiencing a great deal of emotion and it is very important to let an experienced Atlanta wrongful death attorney guide you through this complicated process during this emotional time. When a person is fatally injured because of another party’s negligent behavior, personal injury wrongful death civil lawsuits should be filed to compensate the surviving spouse and children.

What Is Recoverable in a Wrongful Death Claim

In Georgia, there are two separate claims that can be asserted. The first is the “estate claim” which permits the recovery of medical expenses, funeral expenses, and any pre-death pain and suffering. The second claim is for the “full value of the life of the decedent” as determined by the enlightened conscious of the jury. This claim usually belongs to the surviving spouse, but a surviving spouse must share any recovery equally with the surviving children; however, the surviving spouse must be awarded no less than 1/3 of the recovery.  If the deceased was not married, then the surviving children, if any, must bring the claim.  If the deceased was not married and did not have any surviving children, then the surviving parents must assert the claim.  Finally, as a last resort, the Administrator of the estate must file the claim on behalf of the next of kin. If you would like to know what is recoverable in your specific case,  contact us today and speak with one of our skilled Atlanta unlawful death lawyers.

Under Georgia law, the claim for the full value of the life of the deceased is measured by determining the full life as viewed through his/her eyes. The idea is to quantify the damages by determining the life lost by the decedent, which means the suffering of the family members is not compensable. The full value of the life of the decedent is broken down into two components – first, economic damages (i.e., the quantifiable damages such as the total earnings the person would have earned over their life), and second, noneconomic damages (i.e., the intangible value that cannot be precisely calculated and is up to the jury to decide, based on the circumstances). Our Atlanta wrongful death law firm will be able to assist you through this process and help relieve the financial burden.

When Must You File a Wrongful Death Claim?

The  statute of limitations for filing a claim  is usually two (2) years from the date of death. There are exceptions; however, it is best to consult with an attorney as early in the process as possible, because most attorneys will not accept a case if too much time has passed. There is generally a vast amount of investigation that needs to be done and it’s not a good idea to get too close to the two-year deadline.

Van Sant Law, LLC, is a highly qualified personal injury law firm in Atlanta that has successfully represented many clients in wrongful death cases. Our wrongful death lawyers understand the emotional trauma that can result from the loss of a loved one and will take appropriate legal measures to ensure you receive the benefits you deserve.  David Van Sant  is an experienced trial attorney who gained valuable knowledge as an insurance defense lawyer before starting his own firm to represent individuals who have suffered personal injuries. There are many different types of accidents that can result in a wrongful death, most commonly we are asked to investigate wrongful death cases arising out of car crashes and medical negligence claims.

FAQWho Has the Legal Right to File Wrongful Death Lawsuits?

To a certain extent, the underlying facts and circumstances determine who has the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit against another person or company. In general, the deceased person’s estate, surviving spouse, surviving children, or parents may have legal standing to file claims for compensation.

What Is Needed to Prove Negligence in a Wrongful Death Case?

In Georgia, claimants in wrongful death cases must be able to prove, through evidence, that the responsible party owed a duty to the deceased person. In addition, the negligent party must have failed to uphold that duty and that breach of duty, whether through action or inaction, resulted in death. Your wrongful death lawyer will work to gather evidence and to establish and prove the required elements in your case.

Are Wrongful Death Lawsuits Considered Personal Injury Matters?

Wrongful death and personal injury cases share many similarities. However, in a wrongful death lawsuit, it is the surviving family members or the deceased person’s estate who are the plaintiffs, as opposed to the injured person (or someone on behalf of the injured person) in a personal injury matter.

Is It Difficult to Win a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

One challenge in a wrongful death case is that the deceased person is not there to provide details, testimony, or medical evidence. Because of this, wrongful death suits depend largely on eyewitness and expert witness testimony. Your wrongful death lawyer will seek to identify and secure witness testimony and to establish liability.

What Kind of Settlement Might I Receive in a Georgia Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

Compensation for any wrongful death suit depends on the circumstances. In general, settlements and awards in such cases are often significant amounts intended to compensate the deceased person’s surviving loved ones by providing for their future support, compensation for final expenses, loss of future earnings, and more. When you work with a Van Sant Law wrongful death lawyer, you can be confident that your attorney will fight to help you obtain the compensation you deserve.

Contact Our Wrongful Death Attorneys Now if Your Loved One Was Killed by the Negligence of Someone Else

If your family has gone through the tragedy of the loss of a loved one, you need to have a strong legal advocate on your side every step of the way. By  contacting  our wrongful death lawyers in Atlanta, we could help take care of the legal aspects of your case so that you can focus on yourself and your family. Wrongful death attorney David Van Sant is a Georgia Super Lawyers® Rising Star℠ and is a member of the National Trial Lawyers Top 40 Under 40. Over the years, we have been able to secure our clients millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements, earning us a place in the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum®. Should you choose to work with our team, we will fight to secure justice for your family and hold the guilty person accountable for what they have done. Please do not hesitate to contact a wrongful death lawyer from one of our Metro Atlanta offices to learn more. We have multiple office locations throughout Georgia including  Atlanta, Alpharetta, Athens, Cumming, Duluth, Lawrenceville, Sandy Springs, and Gainesville.

Client Reviews
From the first time I called them to the current status of my case, has been by my side through it all. I would like to thank everyone in Van Sant Law for answering any questions that I have in a timely manner. I can personally say, Everyone in deserves recognition for being honest, hard working, ethical, logical, dedicated people. The only reason I rated them 5 stars is because it would not let me go higher! Hilary
I was in a car accident with a tractor trailer two years ago and David Van Sant came highly recommended for someone I could talk to about the situation. Best decision I've ever made! He fought for me in ways that was truly amazing. David and his crew worked so hard to come to a great conclusion on my case. Thank you David, Michael and everyone in the office. Mary
Attorney David M. VanSant is one of the best injury trial attorneys here in the Atlanta area. They are precise and unique in their approach. When I had my car accident, my whole world was turned upside down, but with Attorney VanSant and his team of professionals dedication and quality of service, my life is back on track. Let the VanSant team handle your case! You're in good hands. Crystal