We Answer Frequently Asked Questions About Wrongful Death Claims
Our Lancaster County, PA law firm makes sure you know your rights
As the bills pile up after your loved one’s fatal accident, you are likely to have many questions about the financial implications of suddenly losing one of your family’s breadwinners. At Georgelis Law Firm, P.C., our attorneys take the time to listen to you and give you answers.
- What is the statute of limitations for filing a wrongful death claim in Pennsylvania?
- Who can file a wrongful death action?
- How can our child’s rights be protected?
- What kinds of damages can be recovered in a wrongful death action?
- How are damages distributed in a wrongful death action?
- What do I need to prove to recover for wrongful death?
- What happens if my loved one already filed a personal injury lawsuit before dying of the injuries?
- Should I accept the settlement the insurance company has offered me?
- What should I do if my loved one died in a job-related accident?
- How can I afford to pay a lawyer to pursue my wrongful death claim?
We know you are mourning a terrible loss. We provide the respect and compassion you need, while doggedly pursuing the wrongful death compensation you deserve. Read our answers to FAQs and call us to talk to our lawyers directly.
Get the answer to your legal questions
For answers to your legal questions about wrongful death compensation, call Georgelis Law Firm at 717-394-3004 or contact us online to schedule your free initial consultation. We are available to meet you at any time, including evenings and weekends.
In most cases, you have only two years from the date of death to file a claim for wrongful death damages. If you miss the deadline, you forfeit your right to compensation.
The personal representative of your loved one’s estate has legal standing to file a wrongful death claim. If she or he does not file suit within six months of your loved one’s death, you or another family member can do so.
If your loved one’s child is a minor, the court is likely to appoint a guardian ad litem to protect the child’s interests.
Depending on the facts of your claim, you may be entitled to damages for:
- Funeral and burial
- Your loved one’s medical care, treatment and hospitalization
- Loss of your loved one’s lifetime income
- Lost benefits, such as pensions, health insurance and Social Security
- Loss of services, including home management, cleaning, cooking, landscaping, accounting, security and childrearing
- Loss of love, companionship, guidance, advice and support
- Your mental anguish and suffering
The personal representative is responsible for recovering damages and distributing the money to the beneficiaries of the estate according to inheritance laws of Pennsylvania.
Your wrongful death claim is based on a personal injury cause of action, and so you must prove that the defendant was negligent and that this negligence caused the death.
Your loved one’s personal injury lawsuit survives the death. As an heir, you should receive the damages recovered in the personal injury claim.
You should never accept a settlement offer before an experienced personal injury lawyer has reviewed it. Insurance companies push hard to get you to sign a settlement quickly, knowing that you are unlikely to accept their low-ball offer after you and your attorney have had time to evaluate it.
Workplace fatalities should be thoroughly investigated to ensure that you receive all of the benefits you’re entitled to. The possible sources of compensation include workers compensation benefits, insurance payments and personal injury awards.
We know that the period after a loved one’s death is difficult, both emotionally and financially. So our firm handles your claim on contingency, which means that you do not owe us any fees until you recover compensation. Contingency fees are based on a percentage of the amount recovered.