Charleston Wrongful Death Lawyer
South Carolina law allows wrongful death lawsuits for a wrongful act, neglect or default that causes death in any instance where the deceased would have had a valid personal injury claim had the individual merely been injured and not killed. Of course, money can’t replace or make up for the loss of a loved one, but a wrongful death claim can be extremely helpful in many ways. A monetary settlement can help pay for medical costs, funeral and burial expenses, and provide invaluable financial support for family members who have lost a breadwinner or homemaker or who are finding it difficult to move forward after losing an important person in their life because of someone else’s negligence. Making the negligent party pay for the harm they caused is also a way to hold them responsible for their actions and help the surviving family members find some justice for their loved one.
Charleston wrongful death lawyer Gus Anastopoulo and his team at the Gus Anastopoulo Law Firm help people in Charleston and North Charleston recover compensation for the life of a family member taken from them through another’s wrongful act or failure to act. With a strong background in litigation, our firm is prepared to take on negligent defendants from car drivers to trucking companies, bars and restaurants, and help our clients find peace and security for their future. Call our office for a no-cost, confidential consultation about how we can help you.
How Do Wrongful Death Lawsuits in Charleston Work?
Under South Carolina law, the executor or administrator for the estate of the deceased is the proper person to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Charleston. The lawsuit is brought on behalf of the surviving spouse and children of the deceased, who will share in any monetary recovery according to South Carolina’s intestacy laws (the laws that say how to distribute a person’s assets if the individual dies without a valid will). If the deceased did not leave behind a spouse or children, then the parents of the deceased will benefit from the recovery. If no living parents survived the deceased, then the payment goes to the other heirs of the estate.
Damages recoverable in a wrongful death claim include compensatory damages such as funeral and burial expenses and compensation for the loss of companionship of a family member, the loss of consortium of a spouse, or the loss of guidance and training of a parent. A dollar amount can also be fixed for the loss of income the deceased would have earned had he or she not been needlessly killed prematurely, or the value of the loss of services to the household the individual would have provided. Exemplary damages are also appropriate in cases where the responsible party acted with recklessness, willfulness, or malice. Exemplary damage awards can be especially high depending on the financial resources of the responsible party and the degree of reprehensible conduct involved.
South Carolina also recognizes survival actions which can be brought by the personal representative of the estate. While wrongful death actions compensate the surviving family members for the harm they are suffering (funeral costs, loss of a loved one), the benefits or damages in a survival action reflect the harm suffered by the individual. Juries can award compensation in survival cases for harm such as medical bills the deceased incurred between the time of injury and death, as well as an amount to represent any conscious pain and suffering endured.
Taken together, the damages recovered in wrongful death and survival actions can help family members deal with the financial and emotional repercussions of their loss and give them support while they work to rebuild their lives, deal with the loss and move forward.
How Can the Gus Anastopoulo Law Firm Help in Charleston Wrongful Death Cases?
Any settlement of a wrongful death or survival action must be approved by the court as fair, reasonable, and in the best interests of the beneficiaries or estate. Charleston wrongful death lawyer Gus Anastopoulo can represent your family in settlement negotiations with the insurance company to ensure a fair settlement that will be approved by the court.
Our firm also has a strong background in litigation, so we’ll be prepared to litigate your case and go to trial if necessary to get a successful result. Wrongful death cases have to be proven just like other personal injury cases. The plaintiff has to prove that the accident was caused by the defendant’s negligence or fault and that the claimed damages resulted. Gathering evidence and building a case is often more challenging in cases involving death. Attorney Gus Anastopoulo has been litigating cases since the start of his legal career and knows how to prepare and present a convincing case that proves the other party’s negligence and responsibility to the victim’s family.
Justice and Compensation in Charleston Wrongful Death Matters
If you’ve lost a family member to a Charleston car, truck or motorcycle accident caused by a drunk driver or other negligent driver, let us help you pick up the pieces by securing valuable compensation on your behalf and finding justice for you and your loved one.