Wrongful death cases in Iowa are complicated. There are complex rules about everything from who can file a wrongful death case to what damages can be recovered and how the proceeds from any settlement or judgment should be divided. An attorney who is experienced in handling wrongful death cases can help you to make sure that your case is thoroughly investigated, filed properly, aggressively pursued and that you recover all of the types of damages available. A preventable death is a tragedy to a family unlike anything else and while nothing can undo that tragedy, a wrongful death lawsuit can help you recover some of the monetary losses caused by the death and hold the person or company whose negligence or carelessness caused the death responsible.
One of the first things that an Iowa attorney can help you with is determining who should bring the wrongful death claim and who has a right to recover damages because of the wrongful death. Many claims in Iowa must be brought by the executor or administrator of the estate of the deceased person. This requires that an Estate be established, even in cases where the person dies without having a will. An experienced wrongful death lawyer will be able to file all of the necessary paperwork to set-up an estate and comply with all of the complicated rules regarding maintaining an estate. Sometimes other people should also be parties to the lawsuit in addition to the Estate, including the parents of a minor child who has been killed.
An experienced wrongful death attorney will also be able to help you determine what damages are available and hire the right experts to determine the amount of the damages. Some of the types of damages available are the lost value of the accumulation of the estate, pre-death pain and suffering and pre-death loss of enjoyment of life. Oftentimes the most important damages are the lost support of the deceased person, this includes the lost financial support provided to a spouse or child of the deceased person. The lost value of the accumulation of the estate and lost financial support are often calculated by an economist that specializes in these types of determinations.
Certain people can also recover what is known as loss of consortium damages-the lost services, support and companionship of the deceased person. In Iowa, the people that are entitled to these damages include both adult and minor children of the deceased person, the parents of the deceased person, whether the person was an adult or child and the spouse of a deceased person.
An experienced lawyer can also help you to settle any wrongful death claims. In Iowa, wrongful death settlements must be approved by the Court and there are additional legal requirements if minor children will receive a portion of the settlement.
There are many complicated issues in a wrongful death case that an experienced lawyer can help you with. It is very difficult to lose a loved one and oftentimes very difficult to recover compensation from the responsible person and you should not have to go through it alone. If you would like to learn more please contact us.