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What Qualifies a Tragedy as Wrongful Death in Kansas?

May 1, 2022 | Personal Injury

Facing the unexpected loss of a family member is never easy, and the loss of a loved one often results in long-term challenges for families. Grief can not only affect the body, mind, emotions, and spirit, but family members may no longer have the monetary support to continue living the life to which they grew accustomed. If you’re in this unfortunate position, you likely have many questions as you start to move forward.

At Goza & Honnold, our Kansas City wrongful death attorneys tackle each case with empathy and honesty. We want to hear your story and give you and your loved ones the best legal advice possible.

What Is Considered Wrongful Death?

When an individual dies in any accident, traumatic event, or other circumstance resulting from the wrongdoing of another party, it is considered wrongful death. For example, car accidents, medical malpractice, defective products, pedestrian accidents, and many other circumstances may lead to a wrongful death case.

Kansas statute 60-1901 states the following:

“If the death of a person is caused by the wrongful act or omission of another, an action may be maintained for the damages resulting therefrom if the former might have maintained the action had such person lived, in accordance with the provisions of this article, against the wrongdoer, or such wrongdoer’s personal representative if such wrongdoer is deceased.”

In a wrongful death case, the surviving family members may pursue legal action against the responsible parties. The surviving spouse, children, grandchildren, parents, or siblings may file a claim on behalf of the deceased. If no surviving family members can file a claim, an appointed representative can take their place if it is stated in the deceased’s will. If this is not the case, the court may appoint someone to act on behalf of and represent the deceased to file a claim. Because there are limitations to who may sue, it is essential to consult with your lawyer to determine if the case is eligible for a claim.

Qualifications of Wrongful Death According to Kansas Law

While certain family members may be eligible to file a claim, there are also qualifications to consider for wrongful death cases in Kansas. Under the law, surviving family members have two years to file a claim after the date of the individual’s death. Proving liability and negligence may seem difficult, especially if the liable party denies responsibility.

When claiming negligence and fault on the party responsible for wrongful death, the case must involve proof of:

  • Duty of care: The party responsible had a duty of care to the individual.
  • Breach of duty: A breach of duty resulted in the accident the individual endured.
  • Causation: Proving the breach of duty was the direct cause of an accident or fatality.
  • Damages: Your family and loved one suffered damages as the result of the at-fault party’s actions and you are eligible to collect compensation through a wrongful death claim.

Types of compensation available in a wrongful death case can include:

  • Economic: Any financial and tangible losses, such as funeral and burial expenses, the individual’s medical expenses for the injury or illness before death, and the wages or benefits the individual would have earned if they hadn’t passed away.
  • Non-economic: Includes any pain and suffering, your loss of companionship, and support from the individual.

It’s crucial to secure the help of an experienced and skilled lawyer so they can lead you throughout the legal process and pursue the compensation you deserve. If you qualify for compensation because of the loss of a loved one, a lawyer can ensure your case is handled appropriately.

Seeking Legal Counsel From a Skilled Attorney

When another person’s negligence leads to a fatality, a skilled legal team can help you understand your options for justice .. Hiring an experienced attorney who understands the ins and outs of the law and the process of a wrongful death case will be instrumental so you can focus on grieving your loved one’s death and celebrating his or her life.

Without an attorney who understands the steps to take when an individual is wrongfully killed in an accident, you may miss out on pursuing the compensation your family deserves. Regardless of the cause of the accident, our skilled attorneys can evaluate the details of the case, listen to your story, and look to take any and all necessary legal action against the negligent parties.

Speak to a Compassionate and Knowledgeable Kansas Wrongful Death Attorney at Goza & Honnold

At Goza & Honnold Trial Lawyers, our wrongful death attorneys may be able to help thoroughly investigate your case by thoroughly investigating your claim and helping you navigate any legal action. We understand losing a loved one is tragic, which is why our lawyers approach each case with empathy and compassion. We evaluate the details of each case so we can look to prove negligence on behalf of the party responsible for the accident. You may contact our law firm to schedule a free consultation by filling out our contact form or calling (913) 451-3433.