Wrongful Death Law in Gulfport
Aggressive Representation from a Compassionate Wrongful Death Lawyer
FIGHTING TO OBTAIN COMPENSATION FOR FAMILIES IN GULFPORT
Losing someone in your family due to someone else’s negligence, recklessness, or wrongful actions can be an indescribably painful experience. While nothing can bring your loved one back, holding the at-fault party accountable can help you get some much-needed closure. The compensation you get from the at-fault party can also ease the financial burden caused by your loved one’s death.
We at the Boyce Holleman law firm have been helping families who are coping with tragedy for over 60 years. When someone you love dies due to the negligence of another person or party, you have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Given the emotional pain and suffering your family is going through, filing a claim may be your absolute last concern.
Our well-known and highly respected law firm has the greatest sympathy for your circumstances. Our devoted and professional wrongful death lawyers in Gulfport can assist you in obtaining fair compensation to lessen the hardship, pain, and grief your family is experiencing.
What Constitutes Wrongful Death under Mississippi Law?
According to Section 11-7-13 of the Mississippi Code, a person’s death can be considered a wrongful death if it was caused by:
- A real, negligent, or wrongful act or omission.
- Unsafe machinery or appliances.
- Breach of warranty of fitness of items meant for human consumption.
Simply put, if a person’s death was caused by another person or entity’s negligence or intentional act, it can be considered a wrongful death.
Legal Elements to Prove in a Wrongful Death Claim
If your loved one died as a result of someone’s negligence, you need to prove the following elements.
- The at-fault party owed a duty of care to your loved one.
- The at-fault party failed to do their duty – either by doing something wrong or by not doing something that they were supposed to do.
- The at-fault party’s breach of duty was the cause of your loved one’s death.
- You suffered damages as a result of your loved one’s death.
Burden of Proof in Wrongful Death Lawsuits in Mississippi
In Mississippi, a wrongful death lawsuit is a civil action, which allows the eligible family members of the decedent to claim financial damages. However, the burden of proof lies on them to prove the fault of the other party that caused the wrongful death. The attorneys at Boyce Holleman law firm know what it takes to establish the burden of proof and hold the negligent parties liable.
Our legal team will thoroughly investigate the accident, visit the site of the crash with accident reconstruction experts, collect all possible physical and forensic and medical documentation, meet with eyewitnesses, and develop a strong case strategy to prove the defendant’s fault. While we will focus on tough negotiations with the insurance company to obtain a rightful settlement on your behalf, we will be fully prepared to go to trial if it becomes necessary.
Who is Eligible to Bring a Wrongful Death Claim under Mississippi Law?
Mississippi law allows the following parties to bring a wrongful death claim in the event of a family member’s death.
- The deceased person’s spouse.
- The deceased person’s children.
- The deceased person’s parents.
- The deceased person’s siblings.
Apart from this, the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate can also bring a wrongful death claim against the at-fault party.
Shared Fault in a Mississippi Wrongful Death Case
Mississippi follows the pure comparative fault rule in wrongful death cases. This means, if the decedent was partially at fault for their own fatal injuries, it is possible to recover from the negligent parties the share of fault that they are proportionately liable for. Even if the decedent is found to be 99% at fault for their own wrongful death, the plaintiffs can still recover the remaining 1% from the defendants under Mississippi wrongful death law.
Time Limit to File a Wrongful Death Claim in Mississippi
The deadline for bringing a wrongful death claim – commonly referred to as the statute of limitations – depends on whether your loved one’s death was caused by someone’s negligence or intentional act.
If the death was caused by someone’s negligence, you have three years starting from the date of your loved one’s death to file a claim. If the death was caused by an intentional act, you have only one year starting from the date of your loved one’s death – to file a claim.
Can the Statute of Limitations for a Wrongful Death Lawsuit Be Extended in Mississippi?
Under normal circumstances, the statute of limitations cannot be extended at all. If you fail to bring the claim within the time limit, you will permanently lose your right to sue and recover compensation from the at-fault party.
Based on this, if the person who has the right to file a wrongful death claim happens to be a minor, the deadline for filing the claim will start only from the date on which they turn 18.
Once the person turns 18, they need to file a claim within one year (in case of an intentional wrongdoing-based claim) or within three years (in case of a negligence-based claim).
In some cases, the family members of the deceased person might be able to file a claim even after the deadline has passed – if they come across a new piece of evidence or new information that was concealed from them at the time of their loved one’s death.
For example, if your loved one died shortly after a medical procedure and if you find out after a few years that their death was caused as a result of medical negligence or malpractice, you might be able to file a claim against the medical professional in question or the hospital. Such cases, however, are rare and you must have convincing evidence to prove that the evidence of malpractice was concealed or was not available at the time of your loved one’s death.
Potential Damages You Can Recover in a Mississippi Wrongful Death Case
- Cost of medical care provided to your loved one prior to their death (final healthcare expenses, such as emergency procedures and life support).
- Cost of funeral and burial services.
- Estimated amount of wages, bonuses, and other financial incentives your loved one would have earned in their lifetime.
- Inheritance that you would have gotten if your loved one had lived.
- Cost of repairing or replacing your loved one’s property that was damaged in the accident.
- Damages for the pain and suffering your loved one went through prior to their death.
- Damages for the loss of companionship and support.
- Damages for the loss of consortium.
Division of Wrongful Death Damages Among Family Members
- If the deceased person has a surviving spouse, but does not have any children, the spouse will receive the compensation in its entirety.
- If the deceased person has a surviving spouse as well as children, the compensation will be split equally among them.
- If the deceased person does not have a surviving spouse, the compensation will be split equally among the children.
- If the deceased person does not have a surviving spouse or children, the compensation will be split equally among the parents and siblings.
Obtaining Just Compensation for Wrongful Death Survivors Since 1950
The death of a loved one is the most traumatic event a family can experience. If you lose a family member due to negligence, let the Boyce Holleman law firm provide you with experienced and competent representation. To schedule a consultation with one of our dedicated lawyers, contact us 24/7 by phone at 228-863-3142 or via our convenient online form. We have flexible office hours, readily available parking, and are located near public transportation.