If one of your loved ones has died because of the negligent actions of another person, you may want to consider filing a wrongful death lawsuit. However, before you can begin building your case, you must be sure that you’re eligible to file a wrongful death claim.
Every state, including Oklahoma, has very specific rules related to wrongful death lawsuits, meaning you will need to learn more about these rules before filing your lawsuit. Learn how Oklahoma determines who can file a wrongful death lawsuit and discover the benefits of hiring a personal injury attorney for help.
Oklahoma Rules for Wrongful Death
In the Oklahoma Statutes Chapter 12, Section 1053, wrongful death is a defined as a death that has been caused by “the wrongful act of another.”
A wrongful act that results in another person’s death can be conduct that is intentional, neglectful, or reckless. You can file a wrongful death claim in Oklahoma if the deceased person would have been able to file a personal injury lawsuit if they had lived. This means that wrongful death cases are a type of personal injury suit where the family of the victim is filing a claim.
Personal Representatives and Wrongful Death
Personal representatives of the deceased are eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Oklahoma.
In most cases, the personal representative will be the person that is named in the deceased person’s estate plan. This means that the personal representative can be the surviving spouse, children, siblings, or parents of the person who was killed. Courts will usually recognize the personal representative named in the state plan as the person eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
If the departed did not name a personal representative, one may be appointed by the court. If you’re having trouble deciding who can file a wrongful death lawsuit, it’s best to seek advice from a qualified attorney.
Available Wrongful Death Damages in Oklahoma
Wrongful death lawsuits are civil cases, meaning the damages you may receive will be monetary.
There are two categories of damages available in Oklahoma wrongful death cases. First, you can be awarded damages for the pain and suffering endured by your loved one leading to their death. Second, damages may be awarded for benefits and lost wages that your loved one would have been able to earn had they not been killed.
Punitive damages are also available in Oklahoma. Instead of compensating surviving family members for their loss, punitive damages are meant to punish the guilty party.
To pursue damages for the loss of your loved one, you must file your case within two years of your loved one’s death, which is the statute of limitations in Oklahoma.
File Your Case
We have offices in Tulsa, Edmond, and Oklahoma City, and our team would be glad to discuss your options for filing a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of your departed loved one. Request a consultation with the Parrish DeVaughn Injury Lawyers today to get started.