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Portland Wrongful Death Attorneys Who Value Life and Justice

Wrongful Death Claims and Settlements Explained by Expert Wrongful Death Lawyers

Losing a loved one is devastating, causing both emotional and financial instability for the remaining family members. If your loved one’s death was the result of negligence, a wrongful death case offers a means to seek closure and financial support. Consulting with wrongful death lawyers is crucial for surviving family members to navigate the legal field and understand wrongful death claims following such a tragedy.

How does Oregon law define “wrongful death”?

Wrongful death, a term that often surfaces in legal discussions, holds a significant place in Oregon’s legal landscape. Understanding what qualifies as a wrongful death under Oregon law is crucial. It helps acknowledge the rights of the deceased and their families. Additionally, it aids in comprehending the obligations and legal consequences for individuals and organizations.

In Oregon law, wrongful death occurs when someone dies because of another person’s wrongful act or omission.

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What are the common causes of wrongful death?

This definition is similar to but distinct in certain aspects from definitions in other states. Specific legal requirements in Oregon determine if a death is wrongful. This includes establishing negligence or a deliberate act that resulted in death.

Wrongful death can stem from various situations. The most common causes include:

Medical-Related Causes

Medical Malpractice

  • Surgical Errors
  • Misdiagnosis and Delayed Diagnosis
  • Medication and Prescription Errors

Birth-Related Injuries

  • Infant Wrongful Death
  • Maternal Complications

Nursing Home Neglect and Abuse

  • Neglect-Induced Conditions
  • Abuse and Intentional Harm

Workplace and Occupational Hazards

Industrial Accidents

  • Machinery Malfunctions
  • Exposure to Toxic Substances

Construction Site Incidents

  • Falls and Collapses
  • Electrical and Fire Hazards

Maritime and Offshore Accidents

  • Drowning and Asphyxiation
  • Equipment Failures

Terrorism and Public Attacks

  • Bombings and Shootings
  • Negligence in Security Measures

Environmental and Public Safety Negligence

Natural Disaster-Related Deaths

  • Government and Corporate Negligence
  • Inadequate Emergency Response

Fire and Explosion Incidents

  • Residential and Commercial Fires
  • Industrial Explosions

Vehicular and Transportation Accidents

Automobile Crashes

  • Driver Negligence
  • Vehicle Defects

Commercial Trucking Accidents

  • Driver Fatigue
  • Overloading and Improper Maintenance

Public Transportation Accidents

  • Train and Bus Accidents
  • Negligence in Operation and Maintenance

Product Liability and Consumer Goods

Defective Products

  • Household Appliances
  • Children’s Toys and Products

Pharmaceutical Errors

  • Dangerous Drug Side Effects
  • Inadequate Warning Labels

Criminal Acts and Intentional Harm

Assault and Violent Crimes

  • Homicide and Manslaughter
  • Domestic Violence

Special Considerations

Elderly and Vulnerable Populations

  • Age-Related Vulnerabilities
  • Legal Protections and Rights

Children and Minors

  • School and Playground Accidents
  • Child Neglect and Abuse
  • Negligent Supervision

Who has the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Oregon?

The state requires that the personal representative of the deceased’s estate file the wrongful death lawsuit in order to prevent multiple people filing similar lawsuits and clogging the court system. Then, the proceeds from the lawsuit or settlement will be distributed to the eligible beneficiaries.

The personal representative of the estate stands in place of the person who passed away and asserts the rights the deceased had when they died. If the deceased could have sued for injuries if they had lived, the personal representative may have a valid wrongful death claim. If the person could not have filed a personal injury lawsuit, there probably is not a wrongful death claim in the case.

Who can bring a wrongful death lawsuit?

According to ORS 30.020, the personal representative of the deceased’s estate must bring the wrongful death action. The personal representative acts in place of the beneficiaries who are eligible to receive compensation in the lawsuit.

Often, a personal representative is appointed to handle the wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of the deceased’s estate. This representative, sometimes a close family member, works alongside wrongful death attorneys to ensure that the family’s rights are protected and that the wrongful death settlement reflects the full extent of the loss.

Oregon law states that the following beneficiaries can receive compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit:

  • Spouses
  • Children
  • Parents
  • In some cases, stepparents and stepchildren

Can a family sue for wrongful death?

Oregon law states that a person’s wrongful death occurs when another party’s negligence, intentional conduct, or recklessness caused the death. So, a family can sue for wrongful death if someone dies because of the person’s fault, wrongful act, or omission. If the person passes away in these situations, you can sue for wrongful death. For example, you could sue for wrongful death if your mother passed away in a Yamhill County fatal accident caused by a drunk driver.

However, be aware that you can only sue for wrongful death for a limited time. Oregon law states that you have three years from the date of the incident to file a lawsuit. If you fail to file the lawsuit on time, the case will be dismissed. That is why you should consult with the best wrongful death lawyers in Portland promptly when losing a loved one from someone’s negligence. You have the best chance of winning if your wrongful death attorney in Portland has plenty of time to build a strong case.

Can siblings sue for wrongful death?

Only the personal representative of the decedent’s estate may file a wrongful death lawsuit in Oregon for the benefit of specific beneficiaries. The beneficiaries that can receive funds from a wrongful death lawsuit in Oregon are spouses, children, and parents only. In limited cases, stepparents and stepchildren can also receive lawsuit proceeds. Siblings are not allowed to sue for wrongful death under Oregon law.

How do you file a wrongful death lawsuit?

The state needs the deceased person’s representative to file the lawsuit for wrongful death. This is to avoid many people filing the same lawsuits and causing problems in court. Then, the eligible beneficiaries will distribute the proceeds from the lawsuit or settlement.

Next, the personal representative will work with a Portland wrongful death attorney to file the case with the appropriate court. It is required for the personal representative to prove that the defendant was negligent and that negligence was a factor in the death. Your attorney will investigate the death and look for evidence of negligence, recklessness, or an intentional act that contributed to the death. Many wrongful death claims are settled out of court, but your attorney should be prepared to go to trial.

What damages are you entitled to in a wrongful death?

The damages you can recover depend on the case, but generally, you may receive compensation for:

  • Your loved one’s pain and suffering when they died
  • Your mental anguish and emotional pain over losing your relative
  • Your loved one’s future income loss if they had lived a full life
  • Costs of medical treatment, burial, and funeral expenses
  • Loss of benefits, inheritance, and retirement funds.
  • Loss of love, affection, nurturing and companionship

Determining what a fair monetary amount is for these losses is complicated. That is why you should retain a skilled Portland wrongful death lawyer soon after your loved one passes away. Your attorney will review the accident, police report, witness statements, and other evidence to determine if they can prove that someone’s negligence or recklessness caused the death.

If so, your attorney will then calculate all of the damages you may be able to receive. The amount can vary depending on the case, but big factors are how old the person was and their job. The longer they had to live and the more money they made, the more you may receive in compensation for their early death.

The estate’s personal representative can seek damages related to the wrongful death, including medical, burial, and funeral costs; loss of companionship; pain and suffering for the deceased; pain and suffering for the beneficiaries; and loss of income.

Your best wrongful death attorney in Portland can file the claim on your behalf. The attorney must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that the defendant caused or contributed to the person’s death. For instance, if the defendant ran a red light and killed your loved one in a crosswalk, you must prove that that person was driving and struck your loved one. This can be proven with eyewitness testimony, crash evidence, and video surveillance, if available.

How does a wrongful death claim work?

A wrongful death claim in Oregon works by showing strong evidence that the defendant contributed to the death of the person because of negligence or strict liability. It is difficult to win the case unless you have strong evidence that the person contributed to the death. Some of the information that may help the plaintiff win the case are:

· Photo and video evidence
· Statements from eyewitnesses
· Confessions from the negligent party or parties
· Accident reconstruction data

Your Portland lawyers will send proof of the defendant causing the person’s death to the insurance company. They will do this in a letter requesting compensation. The aim is to settle before trial, but sometimes the defendant won’t offer a fair settlement before trial.

What constitutes a wrongful death?

In Oregon, if your loved one dies under specific circumstances involving another party’s negligence, you can file a wrongful death claim for financial damages and losses. Oregon law allows for the wrongful death claim or lawsuit when the person’s death is due to the person’s or entity’s negligence, recklessness, or intentional conduct. The wrongful death action can be filed if the situation that led to the death could have been the subject of a personal injury lawsuit if the deceased had lived.

A wrongful death in Oregon is most often related to a motor vehicle accident, medical malpractice, or intentional action, such as rape or murder. Some of the damages you may be entitled to if the wrongful death is proven in court include burial and funeral costs, hospital and medical expenses, pain and suffering the person suffered while they died, and loss of companionship and society for the beneficiaries.

According to ORS 30.020, the personal representative of the deceased’s estate may bring a wrongful death action on behalf of the beneficiaries. The beneficiaries may include the spouse, children, parents, and sometimes stepchildren and stepparents.

Whether your loved one’s death was caused by a fatal car accident in Portland Oregon today or something else, talk to a wrongful death attorney today to learn if you have a strong case.

What qualifies as a wrongful death lawsuit?

In Oregon, family members of a loved one who died because of another person’s recklessness or negligence can file a wrongful death lawsuit against the person or company that contributed to the death.

The term ‘wrongful death’ means that the death happened because another person or entity was careless, negligent, or committed an intentional act. There are many kinds of accidents that can be the subject of a wrongful death lawsuit, such as medical malpractice, a slip and fall incident, or a fatal car accident in Portland yesterday.

It can be difficult to take legal action after a loved one passed away in an accident, but you should promptly speak to a Portland wrongful death attorney if someone’s negligence contributed. Your wrongful death attorney can review the evidence of the accident to determine if you have a strong case.

If the insurance company wants to send you a quick settlement check, this usually means the defendant was negligent. It is best to have the settlement documents checked by an attorney to see if you are getting fair compensation. If not, a wrongful death lawsuit can be filed. You do not have to pay the attorney unless they win the case for you.

Is wrongful death a crime?

It may be the last thing on your mind when a loved one perishes in an accident that was someone else’s fault. However, if your wrongful death attorney in Portland can prove that the defendant’s actions or inactions contributed to the death, you may be eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit.

A wrongful death lawsuit is a civil action that allows you to receive compensation for the loss of your loved one if it was due to another person’s or entity’s negligence or recklessness.

It is important to understand that a wrongful death lawsuit is a civil matter, not a criminal one. If the defendant has been charged with a crime stemming from your loved one’s death, that is a separate legal matter that is unrelated to your wrongful death lawsuit. It is possible for someone to not be charged with a crime but to be sued for wrongful death in civil court. It’s also possible to be found innocent of the crime in criminal court but be found liable in civil court for the death.

Whether the death of your loved one was a fatal car accident in Gresham Oregon today or something else, have a wrongful death lawyer in Oregon review your case.

Can you file a civil suit for wrongful death?

When a loved one dies unexpectedly because of someone’s carelessness, you can sue them for wrongful death. Various factors can cause wrongful death lawsuits in Oregon. These include car accidents, truck accidents, drunk driving, medical malpractice, fatal accidents on Route 30, and defective products.

If your wrongful death attorney can prove someone else caused your loved one’s death, you may receive compensation for the damages. Your attorney must show that another person is responsible for the death. If they can do this, you may be eligible for compensation. This compensation intends to cover any damages or losses you have suffered because of your loved one’s death.

  • Pain and suffering for the family left behind
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of the person’s future earnings if they had lived a full life
  • Loss of benefits of the deceased, such as life insurance and retirement plans
  • Reimbursement for funeral and burial costs
  • Reimbursement for medical expenses

To receive compensation for the death of a loved one, your attorney must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that the person or entity contributed to the person’s death. For example, suppose a drunk driver runs through a stop sign and hits and kills your loved one on a bicycle. You would need to prove, with evidence, that the defendant was the person who was driving the car and was intoxicated. Eyewitness accounts, video surveillance, police reports, and other evidence can demonstrate these things.

Can a family member sue for a wrongful death?

If you lost a loved one recently when two died in a car accident in Clackamas County or another car accident, you probably wonder if a family member can sue for wrongful death after a car accident.

The short answer is yes, some family members can sue for wrongful death after an auto accident if their loved one died because of someone’s recklessness, willful misconduct, or negligence. In Oregon, the following beneficiaries can receive compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit after a car accident:

  • Parents
  • Children
  • Spouses
  • Sometimes, stepparents and stepchildren

However, note that Oregon law provides that only the estate’s personal representative can file the lawsuit. This is to avoid the courts being clogged with several family members filing lawsuits. The family can appoint a personal representative to work with the wrongful death attorneys in Portland to file the claim with the appropriate court. Your attorney may also attempt to settle the case with the appropriate insurance company before litigation starts.

How hard is it to prove a wrongful death?

First, you must show that the defendant owed your loved one a duty of care. This means acting in a responsible and reasonable way.

For instance, all Oregon drivers owe others a duty of care to drive in a safe manner. If the defendant was intoxicated, ran a red light, and killed your loved one in a crosswalk, they violated their duty of care. Your Portland wrongful death lawyer would need to prove that it was the defendant who ran the red light, was drunk, and struck and killed your relative.

Next, you must prove that the defendant’s negligence caused your loved one’s death. This is often the hardest to prove because showing that someone was negligent isn’t always easy. However, if a driver was drunk and ran a red light, proving negligence wouldn’t be difficult.

Last, you need to show that you suffered damages, such as funeral bills, loss of income, and emotional trauma and anguish. If you do these things, you have proven wrongful death and can receive compensation.

What is a deposition in a wrongful death lawsuit?

A deposition in a wrongful death lawsuit is where a Portland wrongful death attorney asks someone in the other party a series of questions. The person in the deposition must answer the questions under oath. A deposition is done outside the courtroom. Both sides of a wrongful death lawsuit can ask for depositions from the other side to help them construct their case.

Depositions are done during discovery, which is the pre-trial process where the parties in a civil lawsuit collect information to help them get ready for a trial. Many wrongful death lawsuits end in settlement before going to court, but the discovery process can also help both sides negotiate a settlement.

The attorney for the defense can use depositions during the wrongful death lawsuit. You could have to give a deposition under questioning.

Some plaintiffs say depositions are intimidating, but your attorney will help you understand the process so it is less stressful. Your attorney can discuss with you how the deposition will generally go.

The most important thing to remember is to answer the defense attorney’s questions as honestly as you can. If you don’t know the answer, never guess. Simply state that you don’t know.

What happens after a wrongful death deposition?

A deposition is one of the options your wrongful death attorney in Portland can choose in the discovery process. A deposition allows the wrongful death attorneys in Portland for both sides of the lawsuit to obtain testimony from a witness without being in court.

Attorneys may use depositions to get an idea of what the witness would say during a trial. The judge is not present during a deposition, but they can issue a ruling on disputes or motions that happen during it.

Attorneys use depositions in wrongful death lawsuits for many reasons. Some will use the deposition to get admissions from witnesses or to test their strategy if the wrongful death case goes to court. The deposition can also be helpful to get more evidence that may not have been available through other means.

After the deposition is over, it is possible that the attorneys for both sides may try to reach a settlement. The defendant or their insurance company may not want to reach a settlement until the discovery process is over. When the deposition is over, it may tell the defense attorney that the case against their client is strong and they need to settle to have the best outcome.

How long does it take to settle wrongful death claims?

A wrongful death lawsuit is a very complex process, and the resolution will take time. In some cases, the case may settle within a few months. However, many wrongful death actions can take between one and four years to settle or reach a verdict. Even if the case does not go to court, settling the case will take at least a few months.

If you do not work with wrongful death attorneys in Portland, it is possible the case could settle quickly. What happens is the insurance company may contact you and offer a low, fast settlement to get the case resolved. Yes, you may get money faster, but it is rare that an insurance company will offer you a fair settlement on their own. Most plaintiffs are much better off if they hire a wrongful death attorney to negotiate with the insurance company for more money. The case may take longer, but you are more likely to get a settlement that truly compensates for your losses.

How do you win a wrongful death lawsuit?

To win your wrongful death lawsuit, you must prove that the death of your relative was not because of their own actions but due to the negligence of someone else. Also, you must show that you have suffered damages because of the death.

Suppose someone hits and kills your loved one at a Portland intersection. You’ll need to demonstrate that the other person was responsible for the death. Then, you have to show that you have had financial losses because of the death. These may include loss of the loved one’s income, mental anguish, medical bills, funeral costs, etc.

Your Portland wrongful death lawyer will rely on important evidence to prove negligence caused your loved one’s death. The most common evidence is eyewitness testimony, video footage, and a police report. If the preponderance of the evidence shows that the defendant caused the death, you can receive compensation in a settlement or verdict.

Are there different types of wrongful death lawsuits?

There are many types of wrongful death lawsuits that your Portland wrongful death attorneys can help you with. The most common type of wrongful death lawsuit involves auto accidents and truck accidents. Thousands of people are killed in auto accidents annually and some of them are because of another party’s negligence.

Another common type of wrongful death lawsuit involves medical malpractice. Most doctors are highly skilled but they still make mistakes. The doctor or surgeon may have used an improper technique, didn’t follow the right procedure, prescribed the wrong drug, or missed a diagnosis.

Workplace accidents also are another kind of wrongful death lawsuit. A lawsuit can be filed if someone’s negligence at work caused the person’s death. For example, a construction worker may not have been fully trained on how to stay safe on a job site. He fell and died. If your attorney can prove the worker was untrained or there were improper safety procedures, you may receive compensation in a lawsuit.

What is the difference between malpractice and a wrongful death?

You may have heard of wrongful death and medical malpractice lawsuits. What are the differences and which should you file? If you lost someone because of medical malpractice, it is important to understand which option is best for you.

A wrongful death lawsuit is usually appropriate when someone’s recklessness or carelessness caused the person’s death. Medical malpractice refers to a case where a medical professional’s carelessness caused an injury or death. This type of case happens when the medical professional did not provide reasonable care in the circumstances.

The medical professional could have done many things that injured or killed the patient. The most common are diagnosis errors, improper treatment, improper care after surgery, unsafe techniques, and improper facility management.

Note that not every medical malpractice case results in a death, and not all wrongful death cases involve medical malpractice. If you lost a loved one because of a medical error, you could have both a medical malpractice and wrongful death case. The medical malpractice claim would be for damages and injuries suffered by your loved one before they died. The wrongful death lawsuit involves the damages suffered by the you and the deceased upon and after the death.

Talk to your Portland wrongful death lawyer to find out your legal options.

Is there a cap on a wrongful death?

Did you lose your loved one in an accident, such as in a fatal motorcycle accident in Oregon today? You may be eligible to receive compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit. This litigation, if successful, can compensate you for your losses related to the death.

Some of the damages you may receive are for medical bills, burial and funeral expenses, lost companionship and affection, lost future income, loss of inheritance, and for your mental and emotional suffering.

A common question about wrongful death lawsuits in Oregon is whether there are any monetary caps. Yes, ORS 31.710 states that the amount of non-economic damages you can receive in a wrongful death case is $500,000. Non-economic damages refer to loss of companionship and affection; your emotional and mental anguish, and the pain and suffering your loved one endured when they died.

The cap does not apply to economic damages, including future wages, medical bills, burial expenses, etc. The cap also does not apply if punitive damages are awarded for extremely reckless and dangerous behavior that led to the death.

The law states that the jury is not allowed to be told about the damages cap. Even if the jury awards you more than $500,000 for non-economic damages, the judge will reduce it to the amount allowed by law.

What is the average settlement for wrongful death lawsuits?

It is common for a grieving family to ask how much they can get in a wrongful death lawsuit if they lost their loved one in a fatal car accident in Portland Oregon today. Asking this question is understandable; after all, you need to decide if you it is worth the emotional difficulty to file a lawsuit seeking damages for your tremendous loss.

All wrongful death cases are different and it is difficult to say what an average case is worth. Some wrongful death cases might be worth $100,000 and others may be worth $500,000.

However, a survey of wrongful death payouts across the nation show that many settle in the range of $500,000 and $1 million. How much you can receive in the lawsuit often depends on how much insurance coverage is involved. Another factor is how much the defendant is worth. Also, the vast majority of wrongful death cases settle for within the policy limit. This means the case is resolved for whatever the maximum payout is for the insurance policy in effect.

Your Portland wrongful death lawyer will search for every insurance policy they can that could be tapped in your wrongful death case.

How much can you claim for a death caused by medical negligence?

If your loved on died in Oregon because of medical negligence, you may be eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit to receive compensation for your losses. Medical malpractice or negligence can be ordering the wrong medication, operating on the wrong body part, not diagnosing a condition, misdiagnosing a condition, failing to order the correct tests, and much more.

You may be able to get compensation for medical bills, lost future income, funeral and burial expenses, your loved one’s pain and suffering, and your mental and emotional anguish.

However, there is one limit on medical negligence claims leading to a death in Oregon. The law states that non-economic damages cannot exceed $500,000. This refers to compensation for pain and suffering and your mental and emotional anguish, among other things. But there isn’t a limit on economic damages.

Additionally, if a loved one contributed to a portion of the accident, their degree of fault would reduce your damages. That is not usually the case in a medical negligence case, however.

If you think that your loved one was a victim of medical negligence, you should talk to a Portland wrongful death lawyer today. They will inform you if you have a case or not.

Do you have to pay taxes on a wrongful death settlement?

If you lost a loved one because of the negligent or careless acts of someone, you can file a wrongful death lawsuit to recover damages. As a family member, you may be able to recover a significant amount of money if your case is successful.

However, it is a common question to wonder if wrongful death proceeds are taxable by the federal and state government. For the most part, wrongful death compensation is usually not taxable. The money is usually considered nontaxable because the money is considered to come from a physical illness or personal injury. Once you understand that the money will not be taxed, you can make better financial plans.

There are a few exceptions where you may have to pay state or federal taxes on the money. One is money that is for paying medical bills but they were already deducted from your income in a previous year. Also, money could be taxes if you received money for emotional pain and distress that was not directly caused by the injury or illness that led to the death.

If you think you have a strong case after losing a loved one, you should speak to wrongful death attorneys in Portland today.

Who pays for a wrongful death lawsuit?

If you or a personal representative files a wrongful death lawsuit in Oregon, you may wonder who pays for the litigation. This questions has two parts. First, who pays your legal fees and who actually pays the money that you receive in a settlement or verdict?

Wrongful death attorneys work on a contingency agreement. This means if they win your case, they will receive a portion of the settlement or verdict award. For instance, if you receive a $1 million settlement for losing your loved one in a Yamhill County fatal accident, your attorney will receive approximately 35% or 40% of that money for their work.

Next, who actually pays the money that you receive at the end of the case? Usually, an insurance company pays the money to you or the personal representative. For example, if a drunk driver hit and killed your father, the person’s personal auto insurance policy would probably have to compensate you. If the driver was working at the time of the accident, his employer’s commercial insurance policy would likely be liable.

The other option to receive compensation is from the defendant’s personal estate. This is a possibility if the person has significant assets. If they don’t you probably will only receive compensation from any insurance policy that is in effect.

What types of lawyers handle wrongful death claims?

If you lost a loved one in a Beaverton fatal crash or other accident, you may wonder what kind of attorney to use for a lawsuit. Any type of attorney can do the wrongful death lawsuit, but it is highly preferable to hire a wrongful death lawyer in Portland who is familiar with this kind of litigation.

Remember, the legal field is vast. Lawyers practice in every specialty from forgery to murder to real estate to personal injury. Even though most lawyers have a solid understanding of many legal topics, every type of law has its quirks, court cases, and statutes that can change. A wrongful death or personal injury lawyer who works in this field will probably have a better background in civil lawsuits than an attorney who works in patents or estate planning.

Determining how much money you can get in a wrongful death lawsuit is difficult and requires the help of an experienced wrongful death lawyer.

What does a wrongful death lawyer do?

What does a Portland wrongful death lawyer do? First, they will look into the circumstances of your loved one’s death to determine if someone was negligent or reckless and caused the death. If someone was partially or entirely responsible for the death, you may be able to receive compensation for your mental anguish, loss of income and inheritance, your loved one’s pain and suffering during death, and more.

Your attorney will spend a lot of time trying to prove that someone’s negligence caused the death. Whether you get compensation or not in a settlement or verdict will mostly boil down to proving negligence. For example, if your father was killed in a car accident, your wrongful death attorney may review the police report, eyewitness statements, and crash evidence to determine if another driver caused the crash. There also may be video evidence he can use to show a jury that the driver was negligent and caused the fatal accident.

A wrongful death attorney in Portland also will negotiate with the relevant insurance company to get you the best settlement. In a car accident, the attorney will usually negotiate with the negligent driver’s insurance company to reach a fair settlement. When the insurance company will not offer a reasonable settlement, your attorney can take them to court and win the case in front of a jury.

What should I ask a wrongful death lawyer?

Are you considering hiring a wrongful death attorney in Portland? Then you should ask questions to attorneys you may want to hire.

First, you should ask the lawyer if they have experience with wrongful death claims. Any licensed attorney in Oregon can file a wrongful death lawsuit. But you should not hire a real estate or patent attorney to handle a wrongful death lawsuit. Wrongful death cases are a specific niche of the law that require considerable experience and expertise to navigate successfully.

Second, you should ask the attorney if they will handle your case personally. At many law firms, a junior attorney may do most of the work on the case. While there is nothing wrong with a junior attorney handling some aspects of your case, you should look for an experienced and seasoned lawyer taking charge of the litigation.

Third, ask the attorney what they think your case is worth. This will give you an idea of their legal knowledge and their approach to your wrongful death case. It also helps to ask if they think you have a strong case because this also reveals how they may handle the matter going forward.

What are the most important things to know about my wrongful death case?

If you want to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Oregon, there are many things you should know before hiring a wrongful death attorney in Portland. The first is who can file the case. In this state, the personal representative of the decedent’s estate will file the case. Usually, the families appoint an attorney for this, but it could also be a friend or relative.

Also, there are only certain beneficiaries who can receive compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit in Oregon. These are the parents, spouses, and children. In limited cases, you can receive money if you are a stepparent or stepchild, but you should check with your lawyer on this matter.

Next, you have only a certain amount of time to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Oregon. It is usually three years from the date of the accident. If you wait longer than three years, the judge will probably dismiss the case.

Last, you will need strong evidence to prove that the defendant’s negligence led to your loved one’s death. It is not enough to accuse the defendant of causing the death; you must prove it with a variety of things, such as eyewitness accounts, police reports, surveillance video, accident evidence, and more.

What is the statute of limitations on a wrongful death lawsuit?

Losing a loved one in an accident is one of the most challenging things anyone can experience. Dealing with the loss will take time, but if the death was caused by someone’s negligence in Oregon, you probably should speak to a Portland wrongful death lawsuit attorney sooner than later. Why?

Just like a personal injury lawsuit in Oregon, you have only three years from the date of the person’s death to file a lawsuit. The clock starts on the day the person died. While this might sound like plenty of time, litigation can take at least months and might take years. It is important to give your wrongful death attorney enough time to file the case and collect evidence. These cases are complicated and the defense will probably fight the claim, so time is of the essence.

The good news about filing a wrongful death lawsuit is that your attorney can handle all legal matters once you sign an agreement with them. You will not have to do anything with the case other than to provide any information your attorney asks for as the case progresses. Remember to speak to a Portland wrongful death attorney promptly after your loved one passes away. You could receive ample compensation for your economic and non-economic damages.

Why should you consider a wrongful death claim?

Wrongful death in Oregon is defined in ORS section 30.020 and is defined as a death that was caused by a wrongful act or omission of another. In most cases, wrongful death is due to negligence, recklessness, or a deliberate act. These are generally the same kinds of actions that would have supported a legal claim for a personal injury case if the deceased had survived.

You can think of a wrongful death claim as a different type of personal injury claim. The only difference is that the injured party is no longer here to bring a claim in court. Rather, another party, usually a relative, must bring the claim on behalf of the deceased person and his estate.

One of the most important reasons to pursue a wrongful death claim is to make sure that your loved ones, especially your children, have their financial needs met. This is really important when the victim of the accident was the mother or father whose employment provided financial support for family members.

Second, holding a reckless person or company financially responsible for the death can provide family members with a feeling of closure. This is incredibly beneficial for the long-term emotional and psychological health of family members.

Evidence that is collected to obtain a wrongful death settlement or verdict can allow the family to really understand what happened and come to terms with the tragedy.

That evidence, and also the payment from the responsible person or company, can bring to light the dangers and deficiencies that made the wrongful death happen. This process can make it clearer what should have been done to avoid the tragic death. The at-fault person or entity has to face what went wrong and what can be done to prevent it from happening again.

A wrongful death claim that is successful can give the grieving family more peace of mind. After all, you now know what happened and know that someone else will not have to suffer a similar fatal accident.

What is a summary of Oregon law on wrongful death claims?

5 Point Summary:

  • Oregon, like most US states, has laws on the books that a person or business whose negligence caused a death, can and should be held liable for the harm that their negligence produced.
  • One of the most important laws in Oregon is that the wrongful death lawsuit may only be filed by a personal representative of the estate of the person who was killed. Under state law, the personal representative and beneficiaries who receive money that is recovered in the suit can include the: Husband, Wife, Children, If none of these relatives survive, the parents, brothers, and sisters of the victim can be recognized as beneficiaries in the lawsuit.
  • More than one person or business can be named as a defendant in a wrongful death action.
  • It should be noted that there are differences in state laws on who can sue for wrongful death. All states allow spouses to sue on behalf of their deceased spouse. Parents of minors also may sue in all states. Minors also may collect damages if their parents are killed.
  • States disagree on whether parents of adult children may file suit, and whether adult children may sue for the death of their parents. There also are differences on whether extended relatives such as cousins, aunts, and uncles can sue.

Who can be sued in a wrongful death lawsuit?

These lawsuits can be brought against people, companies, government agencies, and employees. For instance, if there is a car accident involving a drunk driver, a defective roadway, and the driver was working for his company at the time, a wrongful death action could have many defendants:

  • The driver and employer at fault in the crash
  • The designer and builder of the road
  • A government agency that did not provide enough warnings about a road hazard
  • The manufacturer of the vehicle, if it is proven to have failed and contributed to the crash
  • Possibly the people who gave or sold alcohol to the driver
  • Possibly the owner of the restaurant, bar, or store where alcohol was purchased or served

When to hire wrongful death attorney?

It is urgent that you contact us without delay to begin the process. Contact attorney Herron for a complimentary in-depth consultation and allow him to help you through this difficult time.

The role of wrongful death attorneys: advocates for Justice and Closure

Wrongful death attorneys are specialized legal professionals who represent the families of those who have passed away due to the wrongful actions or negligence of others. These attorneys play a pivotal role in helping families navigate the legal system, providing a sense of justice and closure amidst their grief.

At the heart of their practice, wrongful death attorneys seek to secure a settlement that reflects the value of the lost life, including lost wages, medical expenses prior to death, funeral costs, and compensation for the survivors’ pain and suffering. These attorneys combine their legal expertise with a compassionate approach, recognizing that behind every case is a family in mourning.

The Emotional Impact of Wrongful Death: A Journey Through Grief and Legal Challenges

The passing of a loved one under wrongful circumstances can lead to emotional turmoil. Survivors often find themselves in a labyrinth of sorrow, anger, and confusion. During such times, wrongful death attorneys act as beacons of hope, guiding families through the murky waters of legal proceedings while providing emotional support and understanding. Their role transcends the mere recovery of damages; they become partners in the pursuit of closure and emotional healing.

Wrongful death settlements not only provide financial relief but also serve as a public acknowledgment of the wrongful act, offering a form of moral vindication for the family’s loss. Attorneys who specialize in these cases are adept at balancing the need for compassionate client interaction with aggressive legal advocacy to ensure that justice is served.

Legal Framework for Wrongful Death Settlements: The Pillars of Justice

The legal parameters defining wrongful death vary across jurisdictions but generally include deaths caused by negligence, intentional harm, or a breach of contract or warranty. Understanding this framework is essential in wrongful death cases, as it sets the stage for the entire settlement process.

Wrongful death attorneys must be well-versed in state and federal laws to build a solid case. They need to prove that the death was caused by the wrongful act or negligence of another and that the surviving family members have incurred damages as a result. The legal framework is complex, and a skilled attorney’s knowledge can make a significant difference in the outcome of a settlement.

Key Factors Influencing Settlement Amounts: Assessing the Full Spectrum of Loss

The calculation of a wrongful death settlement is a multifaceted process that takes into account various factors. Economic damages such as lost wages, medical bills, and funeral expenses are quantifiable and relatively straightforward. However, non-economic damages like pain and suffering, loss of companionship, and emotional distress are more challenging to measure.

Wrongful death attorneys work with financial experts to accurately estimate the lifetime earnings of the deceased and to articulate the full impact of the loss on the family’s quality of life. The objective is to ensure that the settlement reflects the true extent of the family’s financial and emotional damages.

The Trial Process for Wrongful Death Lawsuits: A Glimpse Behind the Courtroom Doors

When a wrongful death case proceeds to trial, it becomes a public affair. The trial process involves several stages, including jury selection, opening statements, witness testimony, and closing arguments. Wrongful death attorneys must be adept at presenting the case in a compelling manner to the jury, showcasing their ability to blend legal expertise with storytelling.

The courtroom can be an intimidating environment for families already dealing with loss. An experienced wrongful death attorney provides reassurance and clarity, explaining each step of the process and what to expect. They become the family’s voice, articulating the depth of their loss and fighting for rightful compensation.

Settlement vs. Trial: Deciphering the Best Path to Justice

When faced with a wrongful death claim, families must decide whether to settle or proceed to trial. This decision is pivotal and requires a strategic evaluation of the case’s strengths and weaknesses. A settlement guarantees a certain outcome without the uncertainties of a trial, while a trial holds the potential for a more substantial award but comes with inherent risks and emotional toll.

An adept wrongful death attorney will analyze the nuances of your case, offering clear guidance on the most advantageous route. They stand as your advocate, ensuring that whether through settlement negotiations or a courtroom battle, the path chosen is one that best serves your quest for justice and fair compensation.

Financial Planning After a Wrongful Death Settlement: Ensuring Long-Term Stability

The receipt of a wrongful death settlement marks the beginning of a new phase—one where financial stability must be maintained. Wise management of the settlement funds is crucial. It may involve setting up trusts, investment strategies, and plans for future expenses, all tailored to ensure the family’s financial security.

Astute wrongful death attorneys often collaborate with financial planners to provide comprehensive support to their clients. Their insight into the complexities of financial planning following a settlement ensures that survivors are positioned to make the most of the compensation received, honoring the legacy of their loved one.

Tax Implications of Wrongful Death Settlements: Navigating the Fiscal Landscape

Tax considerations are an integral part of wrongful death settlements. Understanding the tax implications can significantly affect the net amount received by the family. While some aspects of the settlement may be tax-exempt, others could be subject to state and federal taxes.

A proficient wrongful death attorney will have the resources to advise on tax matters or partner with tax specialists to provide clarity. They ensure that you are not only pursuing the maximum settlement but also retaining the maximum amount post-taxation, safeguarding your financial interests.

Wrongful Death Settlements in Medical Malpractice: A Specialized Approach

In cases of wrongful death due to medical malpractice, the intertwining of legal and medical expertise becomes paramount. Such cases require a demonstration of how medical standards were not met, often necessitating the testimony of medical experts.

Lawyers specializing in wrongful death cases involving medical malpractice bring a meticulous approach to case preparation. They possess the acumen to dissect complex medical records and evidence, arguing convincingly how the medical professionals’ actions resulted in wrongful death, thereby securing justice for the bereaved.

The Transformative Power of Wrongful Death Attorneys: From Grief to Advocacy

Wrongful death attorneys serve a role that transcends legal representation—they are allies in the transformative journey from grief to advocacy. They provide a channel for families to voice their loss and seek accountability. These legal experts not only pursue compensation but also work towards preventing future wrongful deaths by holding the responsible parties publicly accountable.

Beyond the Settlement: Comprehensive Support

A wrongful death lawyer does more than fight for your rightful settlement; they provide emotional support and understanding. They shoulder the burden of the legal process so that surviving family members can focus on healing. By handling every aspect of the wrongful death suit, from gathering evidence to representing the interests of the deceased person, they offer a beacon of hope in a time of darkness.

The journey toward a wrongful death settlement is fraught with emotional and legal challenges, but you do not have to walk it alone. With wrongful death attorneys by your side, you can focus on remembering your loved one while they handle the complexities of your wrongful death case. Their empathy, combined with their legal prowess, ensures that your voice is heard and your loss is acknowledged.

Do you need Herron Law team to take over your wrongful death case?

Contact Us 24/7 by calling or texting 503-367-0829

What Can I Do If I Lost My Spouse?

Losing your husband or wife in a crash is devastating. But having to also worry about the legal consequences of this tragic event can be overwhelming.

In many cases, it is okay to wait a few days after the truck crash to grieve and determine the funeral arrangements. Because of the increased duties the Oregon State Highway Patrol has due to there being a car accident fatality, the police should be doing a complete forensic study of the crash, including getting statements from witnesses, taking video and pictures, and reconstructing the crash with computer simulations. Law enforcement can go for weeks to have a complete accident report from a fatal car accident.

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Personal Injury Attorney Bart Herron

Real Reviews & Testimonials From Real Clients

  • “Honest, intelligent and strong attorney”

    I was badly injured in an auto accident. Bartley Herron persuaded the insurance company that they needed to give me the maximum settlement of insurance coverage. The money was and is very important to my family. I recommend Mr. Herron to anyone needing an honest, intelligent and strong attorney to represent them and to fight hard for them. That is what Mr. Herron did for me.

  • “The settlement your people obtained for me was much better than anything the insurance company had offered me”

    I recommend Herron Law to everyone. I was hurt in a car accident and the insurance company tried to get me to settle without talking to an attorney. I am glad that I talked with you instead. The settlement your people obtained for me was much better than anything the insurance company had offered me. It turned out that I went through an unexpected hardship right after the car accident. I ended up really needing the extra money. Thanks for all of your help and concern.

  • “You gave me the drive to fight”

    Thanks to you for your hard efforts and support, you gave me the drive to fight. I actually miss you guys. We think about you often. Even when things were tough you always made me smile. I can never thank you enough.

  • “Your firm… got more than three times the money the insurance company was wanting to pay”

    I contacted your law firm for help after being hurt. I had been talking with the insurance company. The adjuster wanted to settle. But I was concerned that I should talk to a lawyer. Your firm represented me and got more than three times the money the insurance company was wanting to pay. I’m very thankful for the money and what you did for me.


    Are You a New Client?*

    Free Consultation

    After a tragedy occurs that takes a loved one away, you must first take care of yourself and your family – spiritually, emotionally, and physically. As Oregon wrongful death lawyer, I believe that no one should get in the way of the family healing from the loss.

    There can be many details and expenses following the wrongful death of a loved one. Reimbursement for funeral services, any

    medical expenses and loss of potential future earnings of your loved ones must be patiently negotiated in a wrongful death action claim. Take Your Time! Do NOT rush the wrongful death claim settlement!

    The financial burden resulting from this loss can be alleviated through careful review of the circumstances of your wrongful death claim. Become scrutinizing evidence collector!