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How to Start a Wrongful Death Claim in Wisconsin
When the death of a loved one could have been prevented if it hadn’t been for the irresponsible or negligent actions of another, you have the right to file a wrongful death claim to recover compensation for your losses.
But during a time when you should be able to grieve in peace, figuring out where you should start when filing a Wisconsin wrongful death claim can seem like an uphill battle. Below, we have outlined some of the most important details you need to know when you are considering filing a civil wrongful death suit against the person or organization responsible for the death of your family member.
Filing Your Claim
When you are preparing to file your wrongful death claim, you need to know that you will only have three years from the date of the person’s death to file. This deadline is called the statute of limitations. For instance, if the deceased was involved in a motor vehicle accident and was killed upon impact, the statute of limitations would begin running from the date of the accident.
Only the personal representative of the decedent’s estate, the surviving spouse, children, parents, or legal guardian of the decedent will be able to formally file the wrongful death claim against the liable party.
Know What Benefits Your Family Can Receive
Wisconsin law clearly states which damages can and cannot be included in your wrongful death lawsuit.
Losses that can be included in your claim include funeral and burial costs, lost wages the decedent would have earned, medical bills that stem from the injuries the decedent suffered, and the loss of companionship, guidance, and love. The latter has a maximum allotment of $500,000 for the loss of a minor and $350,000 for the loss of an adult.
You may also include what’s known as a “survivorship claim” that will take into account the deceased person’s pain and suffering from the time of the injury until his or her death. This portion of the wrongful death lawsuit does not have a damages cap.
Finally, you should not expect to be awarded punitive damages. Wisconsin law does not allow punitive damages in wrongful death lawsuits.
Consult a Milwaukee Wrongful Death Lawyer
Filing a wrongful death claim can be a challenge when you are also dealing with the devastation of losing a loved one. To discuss the details of your relative’s death so you can begin the process of pursuing the damages your family deserves, reach out to a Milwaukee wrongful death lawyer at the Law Offices of Gary S. Greenberg today.
We offer prospective clients a free consultation. You can claim yours by calling our office at 414-271-7007 or by completing the online contact form below.