A loved one’s sudden death can turn your life upside down, especially if the decedent was the household’s sole breadwinner. The pain becomes unfathomable when you learn that your loved one’s death was attributable to another person or entity’s negligence. Fortunately, the law allows you to pursue damages through a wrongful death lawsuit.
But while a loved one’s death can impact several people, New Jersey’s wrongful death laws restrict who may file the lawsuit. Understanding how these laws work can help you pursue justice on behalf of the victim as well as all who are impacted by their wrongful death.
What is a wrongful death claim?
Wrongful death claims are a type of personal injury claim. However, they focus on the suffering and losses of the victim’s survivors, rather than the victim’s injuries and losses.
Wrongful death claims are often brought in tandem with survival actions, which focus on the suffering of the victim between the accident and their eventual death.
Per this state’s wrongful death laws, the following individuals can sue for wrongful death:
- The victim’s surviving spouse, children and grandchildren
- The victim’s parents
- The victim’s siblings, nephews or nieces
- Anybody who can establish they were dependent on the victim
In the absence of these individuals, the personal executor of the deceased’s estate may also file a claim.
Not many life experiences are as difficult as losing a loved one due to another person’s unlawful actions. While no amount of compensation can bring the victim back to life, filing a wrongful death lawsuit can help you recover damages and bring the matter to some sort of closure.