Personal Injury Lawyer
Columbus, Ohio

Wrongful Death

Columbus Wrongful Death Lawyer Who Protects the Rights of Families

An accidental death due to negligence can be devastating. While a lawsuit cannot bring back a loved one, a Columbus wrongful death lawyer can work hard to pursue compensation for your losses.

A wrongful death lawsuit enables the family of the deceased to recover monetary losses - such as the loss of income - associated with the premature death of their loved one due to something other than natural causes. Columbus wrongful death attorney Scott Elliot Smith provides clients with experienced representation. Call a caring and compassionate Columbus wrongful death lawyer today for a free consultation. Call 614-874-1056.

The Smith Law Office has the experience and resources clients need. We recognize that you want to regain the life you had before you lost your loved one. Part of our goal is helping clients to return to the life they had before their loss.

What are common wrongful death cases?

Wrongful death cases can arise out of many different types of accidents and acts due to negligence. The following are some common events that may lead to a wrongful death claim:

Contact personal injury lawyer Scott Elliot Smith promptly to ensure your rights are protected after a wrongful death. The Ohio statute of limitations may affect your right to pursue compensation.

Who can file a wrongful death lawsuit in Ohio?

Ohio’s wrongful death laws can be very confusing. Immediate family members (spouse, parent, child, etc.) cannot directly file a wrongful death lawsuit. Instead, legal action must be taken by the “personal representative” (also known as the administrator or executor) of the deceased person's estate, according to Ohio Revised Code, Section 2125.02.

The personal representative is usually named in the deceased person’s will. If the deceased person did not name a personal representative in their will or the deceased person did not have a will, the probate court assigned to oversee the estate will appoint a personal representative.

These complexities mean dealing with a death of loved one in Ohio due to someone else’s reckless behavior or negligent actions can be an overwhelming experience. That’s why it’s critical that you talk to an Ohio wrongful death attorney who thoroughly understands how the legal process works here.

Who can I sue for wrongful death?

Again, in Ohio, it’s the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate who must initiate all legal action on behalf of the estate and the heirs.

In most cases, this means taking legal action against the at-fault party that caused the wrongful death. For example, if a distracted driver caused your loved one’s fatal car accident, the estate’s personal representative would file a wrongful death lawsuit against the other driver or the at-fault driver’s insurance company.

The key to success in such cases is proving that the at-fault party’s actions caused your loved one’s death. Legally, this involves any death “caused by wrongful act, neglect, or default,” according to Ohio Revised Code, Section 2125.01. This simply means your loved one would still be alive if the at-fault party had not caused the fatal accident due to their negligence or an intentional act.

How much time do I have to take legal action?

Ohio has strict deadlines for filing a wrongful death lawsuit. This deadline is known as the statute of limitations. In Ohio, the personal representative of the estate has two (2) years from the date of the person’s death to file a wrongful death lawsuit, according to Ohio Revised Code, Section 2125.02.

Two years might seem like a long time. But the sooner you take legal action, the better. That’s because the evidence needed to build a successful case can disappear over time. This may include traffic camera footage that gets destroyed after a certain amount of time. Or accident data collected by a commercial truck driver or trucking company. Eyewitnesses often move or forget what happened.

Don’t miss out on your opportunity for justice in Ohio. Talk to an experienced Ohio wrongful death attorney as soon as possible.

How much is my case worth?

The total value of a wrongful death case in Ohio can depend on many different factors. But in general, you should be compensated for all financial losses due to your loved one’s death. What you might not realize is just how many expenses this might include.

In addition to funeral expenses and medical treatment and other costs from your loved one’s final injury or illness, all future anticipated losses should be taken into account when calculating the total amount of a wrongful death claim. As a result, your family might be eligible to receive thousands of dollars or significantly more.

This money serves an important purpose. Your wrongful death settlement or verdict can serve as a lifeline to pay for all the bills and expenses due to your loved one’s death. Your case also sends a strong message that such reckless or negligent behavior will not be tolerated in Ohio.

How a Wrongful Death Lawyer In Ohio Can Help

When we handle wrongful death cases, we try to preserve any evidence. We generally interview witnesses and may take photos to document the accident scene.

A wrongful death case in Ohio may include expert testimony from doctors. We may enlist law enforcement officials and other experts who specialize in specific areas.

Compensation in a wrongful death case may include the following:

  • Medical expenses, doctor fees
  • Expenses related to the funeral
  • Loss of companionship for family members
  • Loss of future earnings
  • Loss of benefits
  • Pain and suffering
  • Punitive damages
  • General damages

Contact A Personal Injury Lawyer In Ohio

A wrongful death can change everything. You may feel that you're alone. Don't give up. You have options. The law is on your side. Call 614-874-1056 or contact an experienced Columbus wrongful death attorney online. We have two offices conveniently located in Columbus. Your consultation is free, and you pay us no fees unless we make a recovery.

Super LawyersAmerican Association for JusticeOhio Association for JusticeOhio State Bar AssociationThe National Trial LawyersNational Board of Legal Specialty CertificationMillion MilerNational Board of Trial Advocacy