Wrongful Death FAQs
Nevada’s wrongful death law can be found in Nevada Revised Statutes section 41.085. This brief section of the law outlines who can recover for a wrongful death and what types of damages are recoverable. These statutes are strictly construed, so it is very important to have a knowledgeable and experienced Nevada wrongful death lawyer who is skilled in building and presenting a solid case proving the necessary facts to obtain a recovery. Read below for answers to frequently asked questions about wrongful death in Nevada, and contact the David Boehrer Law Firm after a wrongful death in Henderson.
- What is wrongful death?
- Wrongful death means a death caused by the wrongful act or neglect of another.
- Who can bring a wrongful death action in Nevada?
- Nevada wrongful death law recognizes two different types or classes of plaintiffs in a wrongful death case – the estate and the heirs of the deceased. Each class of plaintiff can recover different types of damages. The personal representative of the estate can recover special damages, such as medical expenses, incurred or sustained before death, and funeral expenses. The personal representative can also recover penalties, including exemplary or punitive damages that the deceased could have recovered if the person had lived. The monies recovered by the personal representative go to the estate and are distributed according to the terms of the will or Nevada intestacy laws if the person died without a will.
Each heir of the deceased (spouse, children, parents, siblings, etc.) may also bring a wrongful death claim against the party responsible for causing the death. Heirs can recover for their personal grief or sorrow and their loss of probable support, companionship, society, comfort and consortium. Heirs can also recover compensation for the pain, suffering or disfigurement of the deceased.
- How long do the heirs or personal representative have to file a wrongful death claim?
- Claims must generally be filed within two years of the date of death. Surviving family members may be consumed with grief and the difficult task of putting their lives back in order after the loss of a loved one, and personal representatives may be occupied with the myriad tasks of inventorying and settling a person’s estate, such as resolving claims, paying taxes, managing investments, etc. However, it is crucial not to miss the filling deadline, because failing to meet the applicable statute of limitations can mean the heirs or personal representative will be kept from pursuing their valid wrongful death claims.
- What happens to a wrongful death claim if the wrongdoer is also deceased? For instance, what if the death occurred in a fatal car accident that took the lives of both drivers?
- If the negligent party has also died, a wrongful death claim can be brought against the personal representatives of the wrongdoer’s estate, or against the wrongdoer’s employer, if applicable. Proving the facts of a wrongful death claim in situations like these can be particularly challenging, so it is especially important to retain the services of a skilled Henderson wrongful death lawyer who is experienced in the type of accident that caused the tragic death of a loved one.