When a person is killed by another person’s accidental or intentional acts, it is considered wrongful death. The surviving family members of the victim may be able to file a wrongful death claim against the liable party. This allows the family to receive compensation for damages, whether or not the liable party is convicted of a crime.
However, each state has specific laws that apply. In order to receive any type of compensation, you must first prove that your loved one died a wrongful death.
Donald L. Blankenship, one of the most powerful men in West Virginia and former chairman and CEO of Massey Energy, is presently on trial in federal court as a result of a fatal accident involving one of his company’s coal mines according to a recent New York Times article. Back in April of 2010, the death of Blankenship’s 29 employees brought to light the company’s purportedly less-than-stellar safety record. Indeed, the accident is known as America’s deadliest coal mining disaster in almost four decades. The case against him is the first of its kind to press criminal charges against a coal baron, which alleges willful violation of safety laws in pursuit of profits. Continue reading
On March 13, 2014 a gas leak triggered a massive explosion in East Harlem, causing two five-story apartment buildings to collapse. The relatives of one of the victims recently filed a $10 million wrongful death lawsuit against the City. Such an accident serves as a reminder that anything can and may happen at any time. If a loved one is ever involved in an incident that leads to death, an experienced Brooklyn wrongful death attorney can answer any questions or concerns you may have regarding your case.
What is Considered Wrongful Death in New York?
Wrongful death, such as death from an accident or incident like the one described above, is defined as a death that is caused by the wrongful act or negligence of another. Such acts serve as the basis for a civil action for damages on behalf of the decedent’s heirs. The New York State Constitution’s Estate and Powers Trust law provides the basis for New York’s wrongful death statute. It allows a decedent’s heir or representative to sue for whatever amount of money damages on behalf of a person or persons who could recover under the estate.