5 Most Common Wrongful Death Claims

Author: Auger Law | November 20th, 2020

As difficult a topic as it is, it’s important to be aware of the dangers that surround us and how to deal with the aftermath when those dangers take the life of a loved one. It’s far better to be prepared for these painful events than to be taken by surprise.wrongful death memorial candle

When a loved one is taken from you due to the negligence of another person or organization, you may want to do everything in your power to make sure the responsible party is held accountable. You may also have a hefty funeral and medical expenses to pay for, and your future financial stability may be at stake. In the end, one of the only ways to really fight for the justice your loved one deserves is by seeking damages through the legal system with the help of an experienced Carolinas wrongful death attorney.

When searching for the best legal representation to support you during this painful time, look for a local law firm with many successful cases behind them and plenty of positive reviews. At Auger & Auger, we have decades of service to the people of South and North Carolina under our belt to prove we are determined to fight for the maximum possible damages from responsible parties. We offer free consultations at no risk to you, so call us and schedule an appointment at (800) 559-5741 or contact us online.

In order to give you an idea of the kinds of wrongful death cases we can help you with, here are the 5 most common types of wrongful death claims:

Motor Vehicle Accidents

With tens of thousands of miles of public roads in North and South Carolina, it’s not a surprise that vehicle accidents top our list of the most common wrongful death accidents. Over 2000 fatal crashes occurred between the two states in 2018 alone, leaving a stark reminder of how dangerous our roads can be. When operating a car or truck at any time, it’s important to stay vigilant and cautious to help you stay as safe as possible.

A wrongful death claim related to an automobile accident can require a lengthy process involving a series of investigations by the police and insurance companies, potential criminal proceedings, and more stress than any one person should have to handle. It can be overwhelming at times, which is why it’s important to consider all the ways you can alleviate stress and increase your chances of recovering fully. Seeking the help of a Carolinas wrongful death attorney can help you in these difficult times.


When a loved one falls to their death due to the negligence of property owners, you may be eligible to seek damages. It’s important to keep in mind that both North and South Carolina law layout specific definitions for the kinds of people that may be on-premises.

  • Invitees – guests of a business. Property owners have the highest level of responsibility to care for invitees.
  • Licensees – social guests that are not patrons. Friends and family are most likely to fall into this category.
  • Children – children are usually held to a different standard than other visitors to the premises. For example, if something on-premises is likely to attract a child and causes injury or death, the property owner may be considered negligent for not doing as much as they can to secure the site and ensure children don’t find themselves in a dangerous situation.
  • Trespassers – unless a property owner purposefully injures or kills a trespasser, there’s unlikely to be a good chance of recovering damages.

Falls are particularly dangerous for older people. 88% of all North Carolina fall deaths between 2005 and 2014 were from people 65 and older. In South Carolina, falls among older adults accounted for “nearly 7,000 hospitalizations and almost 25,000 emergency room visits in South Carolina in one year.”

If you are the spouse, parent, or executor of the estate of someone who was killed in a fall on a property such as a business or home, you may be able to pursue damages from the property owner if they weren’t adequately warned of a dangerous condition that they would not be aware of.

Defective Products

Dangerous products are another common cause of wrongful death. Power tools, nursery products, generators, furniture, pools, trampolines, and playground equipment, amusement rides, are just some of the items that have led to the untimely deaths of some of their users.

ATVs accounted for 15,744 fatalities between 1982 and 2018 according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Nearly 300 deaths reported to the same commission were due to falling TVs, furniture, or appliances. It’s an unfortunate fact of our modern society that hidden dangers lurk around every corner, and often a manufacturer or designer’s attempts to save money comes at the expense of safety measures.

Medical Malpractice

In a perfect world, doctors and hospital staff would never make mistakes. Unfortunately, they’re human like anyone else and can sometimes act in error, leading to the death of a loved one. According to a Johns Hopkins study, over 250,000 people die every year due to a medical error.

Poor staff training, bad hospital conditions, system errors, and preventable negative effects are some of the reasons this number is as high as it is. There are a lot of moving parts in a hospital, which makes it easy for a small mistake to lead to a snowball effect resulting in a serious injury or wrongful death. When a loved one passes unexpectedly and you believe a doctor or medical facility may be responsible, it’s important to get in touch with a medical malpractice attorney in order to find out if negligence played a role in their death.

Poisonings, Overdoses, and Dangerous Drugs

The common American household has far more deadly chemicals and drugs than you may realize. From prescriptions to over-the-counter medications, to dangerous combinations of household cleaners, there are numerous ways someone can wind up in a deadly situation without even realizing it.

When a doctor prescribes a person with certain drugs, they have a duty to ensure the patient is aware of the possibly deadly effects of taking too much. They’re also responsible for ensuring the patient is aware of any potentially dangerous side effects combining medications may have. Opioids in particular are one of the most commonly prescribed killers when it comes to overdoses. Though not all of these overdose deaths are caused by opioids that have been legally prescribed, many of them are.

When a loved one passes due to overdosing on prescription medication, you may be able to seek damages from negligent doctors or caregivers.

Seek Damages With Help From a Carolinas Wrongful Death Attorney

While seeking compensation and justice from negligent parties can’t bring your loved one back, it may help alleviate some of the many difficulties that come from such a loss. By looking for help from a Charlotte wrongful death attorney, you improve your chances of recovering the maximum damages possible. From funeral expenses to medical bills, to financial losses due to a lack of future income, there are many avenues to explore when it comes to recovering from your loss.

Auger & Auger are determined to help you through this trying time by pursuing the maximum from those responsible for your loved one’s passing. When you’re ready to speak with someone about your loss, schedule a free consultation with us and we can go over your options. We’re available 24/7 online or by calling (800) 559-5741.

Posted In: Wrongful Death