Losing a loved one is devastating. When they leave behind a pile of debt, it makes it even harder on their surviving loved ones. Whether a car accident, medical malpractice, defective products, a slip-and-fall or other type of fatal injury, wrongful death claims give survivors the chance to pursue damages.
In Ohio, wrongful death claims are allowed when the deceased would have had cause to sue for negligence, had they survived. Not just anyone can file a claim, however. Read on to learn more about who has standing to sue, and how the Law Offices of Tim Misny can help.
Who can sue for wrongful death in Ohio?
According to Ohio Revised Code Section 2125.02, wrongful death claims can be filed “in the name of the personal representative of the decedent for the exclusive benefit of the surviving spouse, the children, and the parents of the decedent, all of whom are rebuttably presumed to have suffered damages by reason of the wrongful death, and for the exclusive benefit of the other next of kin of the decedent.”
That means that only the deceased’s personal representative (also known as the executor) can file the lawsuit. If successful, damages are divided between the surviving spouse, parents and children. Other relatives and friends generally do not recover, unless they can show that they have legally compensable losses as a result of the death.
What’s the statute of limitations for wrongful death?
The statute of limitations is the legal time limit on when you can file a lawsuit. In Ohio, the wrongful death statute of limitations is two years from either the death, or when the wrongful death was discovered. For instance, if your spouse dies during a routine surgery due to medical malpractice, the statute of limitations will either begin when they die or when you learn medical malpractice caused their death.
If you believe that your loved one died due to someone else’s negligence, it’s important that you or their personal representative call the Law Offices of Tim Misny as soon as possible. Although two years sounds like a long time, it’s easy to lose track of time when you’re grieving. Furthermore, the sooner you enlist legal help, the more likely the evidence will be preserved. When you call our offices, we’ll review your claim and help you understand which legal options are available.
Discuss your case with an Ohio personal injury lawyer today
Did your loved one die as a result of someone else’s negligence? I’ll Make Them Pay!® Call my office at (800) 556-4769 so that I can evaluate your case right away. We’ll work to hold them responsible for wrongful death and the appropriate damages.