HomeEducationWhat is the procedure for filing a wrongful death claim?

What is the procedure for filing a wrongful death claim?

Personal injury laws cover a wide variety of issues. Wrongful deaths are one such matter. Different states interpret the meaning of “wrongful death” in various ways. In the state of Wyoming, wrongful death is defined as a “wrongful act, neglect or default,” in a case where the deceased could have filed a personal injury claim if they had survived.

A Jackson, WY personal injury lawyer can help you file a claim in the case of wrongful death of your loved one.

How is a wrongful death claim filed?

Civil laws differ by country and even by state. While the blanket understanding of the law in a country may be uniform, its interpretation on the ground and implementation varies. In the state of Wyoming, there is a certain procedure that you must follow to file a wrongful death claim.

  • Appointing a wrongful death representative

Wyoming law states that the Court must appoint a representative who will file the lawsuit. The definition of this “wrongful death representative” is not clear and fixed. The law does not define any eligibility to be the representative and instead states that anyone “with the best interests of the beneficiaries of the lawsuit” may act as the wrongful death representative.

  • Applying to be the representative

The most crucial step in filing a claim for wrongful death is applying to be the representative. For this, you will have to file a separate action with the state for a regular period. This is done to allow others to file an action to be the representative if they feel they are better qualified to do so.

  • The compensation is intended only for the beneficiaries.

Regardless of who acts as the wrongful death representative, when the claim is approved, all the damages are awarded to the beneficiaries of the deceased. These beneficiaries include the deceased’s spouse, children, parents, siblings, or grandparents. 

  • Minimum period within which you must file a claim

It is critical to keep in mind that the period available for you to file a wrongful death claim is two years from the time of death. 

The procedure can be complex, especially when you do not know the law. Therefore, consult a lawyer who can guide you on the proper steps and make the process hassle-free. Additionally, the lawyer can ensure that you file for a claim within the statute of limitation and not commit a mistake that could ruin your claim.