Wrongful Death

Practice Areas

Wrongful Death

Coping with the loss of a loved one is the most difficult experience any of us go through. The grief and emotion felt when mourning death is greatly intensified when the death was preventable and was caused by the careless or wrongdoing of another. While its not possible for anyone to bring back your loved one and ultimately truly right the wrong, many family discover a sense of comfort and closure by bringing the parties responsible for their loved one’s death to justice. Rhodes Law makes it the goal of any wrongful death case to honor the one whose life has been lost and to assist those who remain to grieve and remember their loved one. Under even the most difficult circumstances, we do our very best to provide personal and legal services that is dignified and respectful to the family.

Georgia has adopted a specific law establishing a cause of action for wrongful death. The term “wrongful death” is legally defined as a death caused by a negligent, careless or deliberate act of another.  Under Georgia law, the following are some of the examples of a wrongful death:

  • Intentional homicide
  • Faulty construction
  • Contaminated food
  • Medical malpractice
  • Drunk driving
  • Careless/Negligent conduct
  • Dangerous/Defective products
  • Illegal and/or improper service of alcohol
  • Dangerous medical devices
  • Nursing home abuse and/or neglect
  • Engineering malpractice
  • Criminal and/or unlawful acts
  • Unsafe prescription drugs

 

The law allows the survivors of a loved one to recover “the full value of the life of the decedent without deducting for any of the necessary or personal expenses of the decedent had he lived.” Recovery for the family is designed to compensate survivors in the following ways:

  •  Compensation for the pain and suffering of the survivors
  • Loss of future wages, which may include expected raises
  • Loss of inheritance for children
  • Funeral expenses
  • Compensation for pain and suffering decedent felt prior to passing
  • Loss of love and protection of a spouse, child and/or parent
  • Loss of benefits, which includes retirement benefits
  • Emotional distress
  • Punitive damages may be sought to punish wrongdoers, if available and appropriate.

Georgia’s specific wrongful death law does set forth who may bring a wrongful death action. The deceased’s spouse possesses the first right to file a claim for wrongful death. If the deceased did not spouse leave a spouse, the children have the right to recovery. If no spouse or children survive the deceased, the decedent’s parents are entitled to recover for wrongful death.

Generally, the statute of limitations of two years applies to wrongful death actions. This statute may even be six months or a year depending on the specific circumstances. If your loved one lost their life at the expensive of another’s negligence or wrongdoing, it is imperative you consult with a knowledgeable lawyer to ensure you and your family are protected. Rhodes Law understands the profound impact of the death of a loved one and the lasting effects upon a family. We seek to serve you and your family during your most difficult times.