Wrongful Death Lawyers in New Jersey
We’ll never back down from fighting for justice for your loved one.
The loss of a loved one is always a difficult experience. But when the death arose suddenly from an accident, your whole world changes in an instant.
You deserve to know the truth about who caused your loved one’s death – and to hold that person accountable.
You deserve compensation – even though no amount of money can ever truly replace what your family lost when your loved one passed away.
Turn to Console & Hollawell to help your family get what you deserve during this difficult time. Our New Jersey wrongful death attorneys have more than 20 years of experience handling fatal accidents of all kinds, and we know what it takes to get the answers – and justice – you need.
Call (856) 778-5500 today for your free, confidential consultation.
Compassion and Support for Everything You’re Going Through
Losing a loved one is hard in so many ways. It’s especially devastating when the tragedy was unexpected and avoidable. How can you accept that your family member died for no other reason than because someone else was careless?
You may feel like you’re alone in going through this. Your grief is complicated by unanswered questions about how and why your loved one was taken from you. With no closure, you can’t even begin to put the pieces of your life back together.
Over the years, our NJ wrongful death lawyers have worked closely with other families who, like you, have lost someone in a terrible accident. The truth is that some of these victims were personal friends of ours – such close friends, in fact, that they were known throughout the firm and were often seen dropping by our office.
So, in a very real way, we shared the families’ pain – and their outrage that a negligent driver, property owner, business, or doctor could be so careless that an innocent person died because of their actions. We refused to let these careless individuals and entities get away with what they had done.
When you have lost a family member in a wrongful death situation, our wrongful death lawyers in New Jersey are here to help and support you in every way we can.
- Though we can’t take away the emotional pain you’re feeling, we can treat you with the compassion you deserve as you try to cope with this loss.
- No one can put a price on the lost companionship and affection of someone you loved dearly, but what we can do is hold the ones who took your family member from you legally and financially responsible.
- You shouldn’t have to worry about money right now, but many families don’t have a choice. We’ll work hard to get you every dollar of compensation available. Getting the full amount of money you deserve can prevent or resolve any economic hardships that resulted from the loss of your loved one.
Remember, even if the person at fault is facing criminal charges of homicide or manslaughter and possible jail time, your family is unlikely to get the compensation they deserve unless they pursue a wrongful death civil suit against the at-fault party.
- For many families, pursuing a wrongful death claim is the only way to get to the bottom of a loved one’s death – and finally get some closure. So we’ll uncover the truth, no matter how difficult it is. Our wrongful death attorneys in NJ will leave no stone unturned in our investigation into the accident.
Wrongful Death FAQs
If you have questions about the process of pursing a wrongful death case, you’re not alone. This is a complex and fact-specific area of law. And unlike other types of personal injury claims, it can be difficult to figure out if you have a case or even what kind of lawyer to look for.
You can’t learn everything there is to know about wrongful death lawsuits overnight, or from reading a single article. Fortunately, you don’t have to. Below, you’ll find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about wrongful death cases. And when it comes to the more detailed, specific, or complicated stuff, our wrongful death lawyers in New Jersey will handle it all for you.
Was the Loss of My Loved One a “Wrongful” Death?
When you first found out about your family member’s death, you probably didn’t hear the term “wrongful death.” The legal term sounds strange, even confusing – what would be a rightful death?
Instead, you might have been told there was an “accident,” an “incident,” or a “mistake.” Don’t let a difference of wording prevent you from pursuing a claim – all of these terms could apply in a wrongful death lawsuit.
How can you know if your loved one’s passing falls into the category of wrongful death in the first place?
The official definition of a wrongful death action, as defined by the Cornell University Law School’s Legal Information Institute, is somewhat technical:
“A civil action against someone who can be held liable for a death. Any tortious injury that caused someone’s death may be grounds for a wrongful death action.”
Let’s break that down and make its meaning a little clearer. Basically, a wrongful death is any avoidable, unnecessary death that results from someone else’s negligent behavior.
If your loved one died from an accident or mistake another person or organization caused, there’s a good chance that wrongful death applies to the situation.
What Kinds of Accidents Result in Wrongful Death Claims?
Wrongful deaths happen in all different ways. The common theme is that someone else caused them through negligence. Whether this careless behavior took place behind the wheel, in the operating room, or on a poorly maintained property, your family member had a right to expect a safe environment – and now you have the right to bring the people who caused the death to justice.
Wrongful deaths can include deaths that result from:
- Motor vehicle accidents involving cars, trucks, motorcycles, buses, and trains.
- Medical errors ranging from surgical mistakes and failing to diagnose serious medical conditions. You can pursue a medical malpractice wrongful death claim against a doctor, hospital, home health worker, or other medical provider or facility.
- Workplace accidents. Wrongful deaths in the workplace can result from many kinds of accidents, but they should always be investigated.
- Fall injuries, including fatal slip and falls
- Dog bites and animal attacks
- Dangerously defective products, including medications like Zoloft
- Abuse and assault at private or commercial properties, like restaurants and bars, nursing homes, and schools
Who Can Pursue a Wrongful Death Claim?
Family members of the deceased have the legal right to pursue a wrongful death claim. But how do you know which relatives should be involved in the case, or who is responsible for reaching out to an attorney in the first place?
Determining who will file the claim can be complicated, because it depends on the specific facts about your family. Generally, the right to pursue the claim goes in the following order:
- A surviving spouse, children, and surviving offspring of deceased children (or, if there are none)
- Parents (or, if there are none)
- Brothers and sisters (or, if there are none)
- Children of deceased siblings (or, if there are none)
To find out for sure who will be involved in a wrongful death claim and how the compensation you recover in that claim should be divided, you should seek legal help. Our experienced New Jersey wrongful death lawyers will work with your family to determine the legal standing of the relatives most affected by the loss. We’ll help your family understand all of the options and the guidelines that apply to wrongful death beneficiaries and heirs. We can also educate you on the concerns that many wrongful death estates have, such as whether their settlement can be taxed.
How Long Do I Have to Pursue a Claim?
The loss your family suffered was permanent and irreversible. Nothing can ever replace your deceased family member. So, many survivors are shocked to learn that they only have a short time to seek justice for an accident that had such lasting consequences.
You don’t have long to pursue a claim. In New Jersey, the wrongful death statute of limitations for claims involving accidents of all kinds is two years from the date of the event. There are very few exceptions to this rule.
If you don’t file a wrongful death complaint by this deadline, you will never get the chance to find out the truth, to hold the person who caused the death responsible, or to get the compensation your family deserves.
Two years might sound like a while, especially when you’re trying to cope with your loss by focusing on taking life one day at a time. But it can pass quickly while you’re processing your grief.
You become busy worrying about other things, like paying for the final arrangements honoring your loved one and figuring out how you’ll support your family from now on. Before you know it, that statute of limitations is looming – or already passed.
Through our decades of experience, our NJ wrongful death attorneys have learned that the sooner families come to us, the more we’re able to help them. We can gather evidence of the other party’s negligence, before it disappears. We can begin investigating and building the case long before that deadline. And we can start working toward a resolution sooner rather than later, so the victim’s family can put this whole ordeal behind them as soon as possible.
We know that right now, you don’t want another big decision to make. You don’t want to spend your time and energy researching attorneys and learning about the claims process. All you want is to be able to cope with this loss in peace.
But that’s something we can help with, too. You shouldn’t have to deal with phone calls and paperwork from an insurance company right now, or with the other hassles of pursuing a claim. With us on your side, you’ll never have to. We’ll handle it all for you.
What Kinds of Compensation Can You Recover for a Wrongful Death?
What is the value of a life? That’s one of the questions a wrongful death suit must try to answer. And it’s not easy.
When your loved one died unexpectedly, you lost a lot. Much of what you lost doesn’t have a price tag: your family member’s companionship, friendship, love, guidance, and help.
Other wrongful death damages have an economic value. For example, if your family member was also an earner, you can seek compensation for the amount of money he or she would have contributed to the family’s finances. If your loved one received some accident-related medical care before passing, any medical expenses that now fall on your family could also be part of the case.
There are two elements of a wrongful death claim: the wrongful death action itself and what’s called a survival action. When you have an experienced New Jersey wrongful death lawyer on your side, you don’t need to know the technical details about what constitutes a wrongful death vs. a survival action. But you should know the basics:
- A wrongful death action primarily seeks compensation for the family’s damages
- A survival action mainly seeks compensation for the victim. This is the personal injury claim your family member could have pursued for himself or herself, if he or she had survived the accident.
Your wrongful death lawyers in NJ will figure out which of your damages fall under which action. We will use our breadth and depth of knowledge gained over two decades of practicing personal injury law in our calculation of your damages.
Some of the damages you can recover money for in the wrongful death claim may include:
- The loss of the love, affection, comfort, solace, companionship, society, moral support, and consortium of your loved one
- The future household services your family member would have provided, if this death hadn’t occurred
- The financial support you would have gotten from your family member if he or she was still alive
Of course, there’s another reason besides financial compensation for pursuing a wrongful death claim: justice.
The driver, doctor, property owner, or other party responsible for your loved one’s death should face the consequences of their irresponsible actions. If someone is trying to cover up an important fact about what happened to your family member, it may take a thorough investigation by our wrongful death attorneys in New Jersey to finally get the answers.
What Kind of Lawyer Do You Need?
When they start to pursue their wrongful death case, many families aren’t sure who to turn to for help. Do they seek out a lawyer who has handled wrongful death cases generally? Or do they look for an attorney with extensive experience in handling cases that involve the specific kind of accident that killed their loved one?
When you hire Console & Hollawell, you don’t have to make this choice – you can have it all.
We handle personal injury law exclusively, so we have decades of experience handling thousands of cases involving personal injuries of all kinds. This means we know the complexities of all kinds of accident cases, and how to solve the complications that can arise.
And during our careers, we’ve handled numerous wrongful death claims. In fact, some of our wrongful death lawsuit settlements and awards are among our highest-value cases ever:
- $1,650,000 for the family of a patient who passed away because his doctor prescribed him dangerously high doses of painkiller medication
- $1,500,000 for the family of a little girl who was tragically killed when a home health aide mishandled medical equipment
- $340,000 for the family of a passenger who lost her life in a single-car accident
We’re proud that we were able to get these families maximum compensation. But what’s more important is that we were able to help them get answers, justice, and closure. Their world will never be the same as it was before the death, but at least now they can start healing and moving forward with their lives.
At Console & Hollawell, we understand that a wrongful death claim might not be the first thing on your mind after a loved one passes. We also know, though, that your legal rights won’t be preserved forever. While no amount of money or measure of justice can replace a human life‚ we want to help you get the reparations your family deserves.
Even though we can’t change what has happened to your family or take your grief away, we can can take one piece of the overwhelming process of dealing with death out of the equation. You deserve the right to mourn‚ grieve, and commemorate the life of your loved one without worrying about the hassles of handling a legal battle yourself. We’ll do all we can to take some of the weight off your shoulders.
You deserve legal help that’s as compassionate as it is competent, from someone willing to support you as well as represent you. Call (856) 778-5500 today and put your claim in the hands of Console & Hollawell’s award-winning New Jersey wrongful death attorneys.
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