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Wrongful Death Lawyer

 

Losing a loved one is, perhaps, one of the most difficult moments in anyone’s life. When a loved one’s death is caused by someone else’s actions, the pain is only made worse knowing that it could have been avoided. While there is no amount of money that could heal the hurt of knowing your loved one is gone, seeking help from an experienced wrongful death attorney can help you begin to recover and rebuild your life financially.

Wrongful death cases can be among the highest stakes personal injury claims because the financial and non-economic loss from a death is so substantial. With decades of collective experience and a commitment to client satisfaction, the legal team of Auger & Auger will be with you every step of the way when a tragic death has occurred.

If you have suffered the loss of a loved one due to someone else’s intentional actions or negligence, we’re here to help you. Give us a call today at (800) 559-5741 or contact us online to speak with an experienced lawyer whose only goal is to help you start recovering from your terrible loss.

What Injuries Can Lead to Wrongful Death?

Virtually any injury can lead to a wrongful death. Even something as simple as a dog bite  can cause severe infections, which ultimately become fatal. However, there are some types of injuries that lead to wrongful death more than any others. These include:

1. Car Accidents

An estimated 40,000 people lose their lives in car accidents every year. The majority of these accidents are caused by drivers, but some of them are caused by manufacturer’s defects and other serious issues. Drivers are always encouraged to drive safely, which means focusing on the road and leaving your text messages unread until you get to your destination.

2. Truck Accidents

Due to the sheer size of semi trucks, collisions with these vehicles often result in fatal injuries. In 2017, 4,761 people were killed in accidents involving semi trucks. Many of these accidents were the result of inexperienced or fatigued drivers, while others were caused by people in passenger vehicles not driving safely around trucks.

3. Motorcycle Accidents

Because motorcycle riders don’t have the protection of doors and other elements found on a car, when bikers are involved in a wreck, they often suffer serious and life-threatening injuries. In 2016, 5,286 motorcyclists were killed on American roads. This was an increase of over 5 percent from the previous year.

4. Dangerous Drugs

Nearly every person has taken prescription medications at some point or another. It’s estimated that nearly 2,500 people die every week from medicine that are properly prescribed to them. Of course, opioids are fueling the epidemic, with thousands of people dying from overdosing on either prescription painkillers or their illegal counterparts, like heroin.

Seeking Compensation After a Wrongful Death in the Carolinas

Both North and South Carolina define wrongful death as a death caused by “a wrongful act, neglect, or default” of another person. In North Carolina, the wrongful death lawsuit is brought forward by a personal representative of the decedent’s (that is, the deceased person’s) estate. That representative may be named in the decedent’s will, or they may be nominated by the court.

The representative may seek damages on behalf of the estate and the surviving family members. Damages the representative may seek include:

  • Medical expenses related to the fatal injury
  • Funeral and burial costs
  • Pain and suffering the deceased suffered before death
  • Loss of income
  • Loss of the decedent’s protection, care, guidance, companionship, society, services, assistance, comfort, and advice
  • Punitive damages, if the defendant acted with “malice or willful or wanton conduct”

Any compensation is first used to pay for expenses related to the case, including attorneys’ fees and costs, then the payment of any outstanding funeral, burial or medical bills. Any remaining compensation are distributed to the decedent’s beneficiaries.

In South Carolina, wrongful death cases are filed by the administrator or executor of the decedent’s estate. If there is no administrator or executor, one will be nominated by the state. The executor files the lawsuit on behalf of the decedent’s surviving family members. Only certain family members can recover damages from a wrongful death lawsuit, including:

  • The decedent’s spouse and children
  • If there is no spouse or child, the surviving parents can recover damages (unless they abandoned the decedent before the decedent turned 18)
  • If there is no spouse, child or parent, the legal heirs of the decedent can recover damages

The damages recoverable in a wrongful death case in South Carolina are similar to those recoverable in North Carolina. They include:

  • Funeral and burial expenses
  • Medical expenses related to the fatal injury
  • Loss of income and benefits
  • Pain and suffering and mental anguish of the surviving family members
  • Property damage and other financial losses related to the decedent’s passing
  • Loss of the decedent’s experience, knowledge, judgment, care, companionship, and protection
  • Exemplary damages if the defendant’s actions were deliberate or reckless

In North Carolina, the statute of limitations on wrongful death cases is two years from your loved one’s death. In South Carolina, the statute of limitations is three years.

How a Wrongful Death Attorney Can Help You Through This Difficult Time

If you have suffered the loss of a loved one due to someone else’s actions or negligence, there’s no doubt you are sad, stressed and perhaps confused about what happens next. At Auger & Auger, our goal is to take as much of that load as possible off your shoulders so you can be with your family during this time.

After your free consultation, we will do what we can to keep you involved in the legal proceedings as much or as little as you want. Let us worry about the paperwork, talking to experts and witnesses, and negotiating with the insurance companies on your behalf. We have been helping wrongful death victims get the compensation they deserve for over 26 years, and we know what it takes to win your case.

You won’t owe us a dime unless we win your case. Call us at (800) 559-5741 or contact us online for a free, no-obligation consultation with an experienced wrongful death attorney. Our legal team is always here to take your call.

 

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The list of prior client settlement results and client reviews/testimonials, do not constitute a promise of any particular result in any particular case, as each and every case is unique. Each case was handled on its own merit, and the outcome of any case cannot be predicted by a lawyer or law firms past results.

If a recovery or settlement by trial is made, the client will be responsible for costs advanced in addition to attorney fees. Client remains responsible for costs, expenses and disbursements, including medical bills, within the scope of representation. The attorney’s contingency percentage will be computed prior to the deduction of expenses from the total recovery.

The principal office for Auger & Auger Law Firm is located at 717 S. Torrence St., Suite 101, Charlotte, NC. The attorneys and staff of Auger & Auger Law Firm work and process all of the firm’s files at the principal office location in Charlotte, NC. Other office locations listed on our website are satellite offices that are not staffed daily. Satellite offices are operated for the convenience of our clients and who live outside of the Charlotte, NC metro area and are unable to meet with us at our principal office location. All meetings at our satellite offices must be made by appointment only. Phone numbers for satellite offices forward to our principle office location in Charlotte, NC.