Losing a loved one is always hard. If they died in an avoidable accident, it can be especially difficult. Every wrongful death lawyer at Ward & Ward Law Firm has witnessed the traumatic aftermath of tragic situations like these. Family members may wonder if there is any justice possible or a way to hold the guilty person responsible. Sometimes loved ones have legal options they can pursue against the person who killed their spouse, child, or sibling. Call us at Ward & Ward Law Firm and request a free consultation with a wrongful death lawyer who may be able to help you.
Depending on the circumstances of your loved one’s passing, legal authorities may deem it appropriate to charge that person with a criminal offense. Again, depending on what happened, they may be charged with one of the following crimes:
Manslaughter. There are different types of manslaughter charges, the details of which can be explained in more detail by a wrongful death lawyer:
Homicide. This is the act of someone intentionally killing another person.
It is important to understand that only a law enforcement agent can arrest someone for murder. A private citizen cannot bring criminal charges against someone they believe killed a person. In addition:
After the person is charged with manslaughter or homicide, it is up to the Indianapolis, IN prosecutor to decide if they want to pursue the charge or let the person out of jail.
If the prosecutor and the defense attorney do not agree to a plea bargain, then the case will proceed to trial. At any time leading up to the trial, and even during the trial, a plea agreement might be reached at which time the judge will dismiss the case.
As a result of the long and complicated legal process for criminal charges, the accused may never be convicted, even if in fact they killed another person. This can be devastating to the surviving family members of the deceased. Learn about What is the difference between a wrongful death claim and a survival action claim?
Wholly and completely separate from possible criminal charges against the person you believe killed your loved one, you may be able to pursue a civil lawsuit against them. With the help of a wrongful death lawyer, you can take that person to court. It can be much easier to get a guilty verdict from a civil court jury than from a criminal court jury. If you win your case against the killer, they will not receive jail time as a result, but they may be legally obligated to give you financial compensation. Depending on the circumstances and their financial situation, the monetary award to you could be substantial. It can pay for the medical care your loved one may have needed prior to passing away, and it can replace the income you would otherwise not receive from your deceased family member. It can also pay for your children’s future educational costs and other necessities. What if a person dies before bringing a personal injury lawsuit?
If you lost a loved one due to the negligent or wrongful act of someone else, call us at Ward & Ward Law Firm today to speak with a wrongful death lawyer Indianapolis, IN families trust to get justice.