When a loved one dies suddenly and unexpectedly, surviving family members understandably have many questions. They want to know what happened and who is responsible. And when another person’s carelessness has caused their loved one’s death, they want to hold that person accountable. A wrongful death claim is often an effective way for surviving family members to legally address the loss they have experienced. So, how can you know if you are eligible to file a wrongful death claim?Myrtle Beach Wrongful Death Attorney Derrick Law Firm Injury Lawyers

Understanding a South Carolina Wrongful Death Claim

A wrongful death is defined by the state of South Carolina as the death of a person “caused by the wrongful act, neglect or default of another.” This means, someone died as a result of another person’s carelessness or negligence. Surviving family members must prove that the person responsible for their loved one’s death acted in a manner that the average, responsible person would not have. Perhaps a driver got behind the wheel intoxicated; a company ignored consumer safety testing; or nursing home staff ignored the important needs of a patient.
Additionally, it is necessary to show that the death has caused damages for surviving family members. This means, the death has caused the family financial hardship, emotional pain, loss of companionship or care, or more. Whether the deceased earned vital income for the family or provided essential childcare duties, family members in a variety of circumstances may have rights to compensation.

Pursuing a Wrongful Death Claim in Myrtle Beach

Once it’s been determined that another person is responsible for the death of your loved one, you may wonder how to pursue a wrongful death claim. In South Carolina, this type of claim must be filed by the administrator or executor of the deceased person’s estate. This person is often the spouse of the deceased person, a child, parent, sibling, or grandchild. Once the probate court approves the representative, he or she can then pursue a wrongful death case on behalf of any eligible family members.

Time Limitations for South Carolina Wrongful Death Claims

In South Carolina, the statute of limitations generally, but subject to some exceptions, starts on the date of death. You typically have three years from the date of the death for filing a wrongful death claim. Once that time frame has passed, the courts will refuse the claim. Therefore, it’s important for a wrongful death claim to be filed quickly after the death of a loved one.

Has Your Loved One Died To The Negligence Of Others?

If you're loved one has died due someone else's negligence you should speak to a wrongful death attorney as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Charleston, South Carolina office directly at 843.488.2359 to schedule your consultation. We are also able to meet clients at our ConwayMyrtle BeachMurrells InletMt. PleasantNorth Myrtle Beach or North Charleston office locations. 

Dirk J. Derrick
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South Carolina Lawyer Dirk Derrick helps victims recover from car accidents, personal injury & wrongful death.