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Tampa Wrongful Death Lawyers

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If you are confronting the unexpected death of a loved one and the various changes—emotional and financial –that death imposes on your life, you may need help to get through the process. An unexpected death is often a wrongful death, that is, one caused by the carelessness or intentional misconduct of another.

If this is your current situation, let our team of experienced and skilled Tampa wrongful death attorneys assist you in obtaining the financial compensation that will help you put your life back on an even keel. Whether the death resulted from a car accident, medical malpractice, or even an intentional assault, we will stand beside you throughout a painful process and help you to take on the at-fault parties, their insurance companies, and the complexities of the legal system to get you to the best outcome.

Car accidents, for example, are fairly common in Tampa. Similarly, Florida has one of the highest rates of medical malpractice in the United States. Finally, with a large elderly population and the high percentage of ER visits related to slip and fall injuries of elderly patients, Florida experiences a lot of those injuries annually. Given these large numbers of potentially fatal incidents, it is not surprising that Florida also has a large number of wrongful death cases.

Boohoff Law’s wrongful death attorneys in Tampa can help you deal with your losses and devastation in Hillsborough County. Our experienced and skilled group of Tampa personal injury attorneys in west-central Florida knows how to fight for your rights to insurance companies and can help you deal with your case and obtain the compensation you need. Reach out to our trusted team dedicated to getting big results.

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Wrongful Death Under Florida Law

In Florida, a wrongful death occurs when someone dies because of another’s negligence, wrongful act, or violation of a contract or warranty.

To claim wrongful death, the plaintiff must prove:

  • The loss of a human life
  • That the loss was due to another’s actions
  • That the action causing the death was negligent or intentional
  • Survivors were harmed by the loss of the deceased
  • That the survivors have suffered monetary damages as a result of the death

The complaint must identify all potential beneficiaries, including the estate, and their relationship to the decedent.

Who Can Sue for Wrongful Death in Florida

Only certain persons can sue for wrongful death in Florida. The personal representative of the decedent’s estate can file suit on behalf of the estate’s beneficiaries and on behalf of the decedent’s survivors, who may or may not be the same people. Generally, the survivors are entitled to more damages

Under Florida’s wrongful death statute, survivors are:

  • Decedent’s spouse
  • Decedent’s children; if under 25, they are entitled to greater damages.
  • Decedent’s parents
  • Decedent’s blood relatives who were at least partially dependent on the decedent for support, including adoptive brothers and sisters

What Damages Can You Recover for Wrongful Death

Generally, in a wrongful death cause of action, you can recover for the kinds of damages that the decedent would have recovered in a personal injury action if they had survived.

All survivors can recover:

  • Value of lost support and services from the date of the injury to the death with interest
  • Any medical or funeral expenses paid by that particular survivor
  • Value of Future loss of support and services reduced to present value, considering
    • Relationship to the deceased
    • Amount t of decedent’s net income available to that particular survivor
    • Replacement value of the decedent’s services
    • Joint life expectancies of the deceased and the survivor

Decedent’s Spouse can recover:

  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of protection
  • Mental pain and suffering from the date of injury

Decedent’s Minor Children, and all children if no surviving spouse, can recover:

  • Loss of parental companionship, instruction, and guidance
  • Mental pain and suffering from the date of the injury

Decedent’s Parents can recover:

  • Mental pain and suffering from the date of injury if the decedent was a minor child
  • Mental pain and suffering from the date of injury for an adult child if there were no other survivors

Personal Representative of Decedent’s Estate can recover:

  • Loss of earnings from the deceased from the date of injury to date of death less support of survivors with interest.
  • Loss of the prospective net accumulation of an estate

It’s easy enough to say that survivors can recover something, but sometimes it helps to explain what those terms mean. Let’s look at some of them.

Mental Pain and Suffering

Pain and suffering are non-economic damages under Florida law. That is, they are subjective and difficult to calculate. The term refers to the physical discomfort and the emotional pain a victim suffers after an accident. Mood disorders, chronic pain, and similar suffering can all fit into this category.

Loss of Companionship and Protection

Certain familial relationships include, by their nature, providing guidance, instruction, cooperation, and support. These damages are generally only available to surviving spouses and children.

Loss of Support and Services

Each surviving family member will have been the recipient of support in the form of money, property, or physical labor from the deceased and can recover the value of that property. An example is the spouse’s services around the house that a commercial service must now provide.

Medical Bills and Funeral Expenses

Any family member can recover out-of-pocket funds for the decedent’s medical costs and funeral expenses through the wrongful death claim.

Lost Earnings

Available only to the estate, the future lost earnings include wages, salaries, commissions, and potential pension benefits that the deceased might have earned.

Lost Accumulation for the Value of the Estate

Only the estate can recover the value of investments or income that the deceased might have earned or accumulated over time.

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Tampa, FL 33603

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Common Causes of Wrongful Death in Florida

Wrongful death arises in many of the same circumstances as personal injury cases.

Among the more common causes of wrongful death are:

  • Car accidents or truck accidents – Florida experiences more than 3,000 fatal car accidents a year, according to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.
  • Pedestrian accidents and bicycle accidents – Pedestrians and cyclists account for one-fourth of all traffic accident deaths in Florida.
  • Unsafe working conditions/worksite injuries – Florida has about 200 worksite fatalities per year
  • Premises Liability – Unsafe commercial and residential locations/slip-and-fall injuries – The US suffers over 17,000 slip-and-fall fatalities annually and, because of Florida’s large number of elderly residents, a significant number of them happen in Florida.
  • Medical malpractice – Only decedent’s children under 25, adult children dependent on the deceased for support, the spouses, or the parents of a deceased child under 25 can sue for wrongful death damages under a medical malpractice claim. In other words, with no spouse or dependent relatives or children under 25, the only possible recovery is the funeral and medical expenses. The maximum recoverable is in the range of $12,000, leading many lawyers to reject these cases.
  • Dangerous products/ product liability – Florida experiences its fair share of the tens of thousands of dangerous product deaths each year in the United States.
  • Child Injuries – Prevented child deaths, including drowning – In 2019, more than 7 million children 14 and under died of preventable or treatable causes. These cases, particularly when they relate to drowning, are often the basis for a wrongful death case.
  • Intentional criminal actions – Florida is in the mid-range of US states for murders at 1,290 in 2021, but each one of those can potentially serve as the basis for a wrongful death lawsuit. These cases often involve family members, but they may also involve those who are essentially judgment-proof.

Experienced wrongful death lawyers like those at Boohoff Law can help you evaluate your case to determine whether the cause of death of your loved one will support a viable wrongful death case. Let us help you find the way toward a successful resolution of your case.

How Long Can You Take to File Your Claim?

Generally, to recover on wrongful death, the personal representative must file within two years of the date of death for the decedent. There are, however, some exceptions.

If medical malpractice prompts the wrongful death case, the plaintiff must comply with the medical malpractice statutes of limitations that require filing within two years of the time the malpractice is discovered or should have been discovered with the exercise of due diligence. The law will never permit a suit filed more than four years after the injury. Thus, for a med-mal case, you may have a longer statute of limitations.

A wrongful death case against a state or government may need to begin far sooner, so please call Boohoff Law without hesitating.

Finally, if one of the defendants in a wrongful death case dies, you must file a motion seeking to substitute that individual’s personal representative for the original defendant within 90 days of the death. Failure to do this on time can end your case forever.

As you can see, the tricky nature of the statute of limitations in a wrongful death case is yet one more reason why working with experienced wrongful death counsel like those at Boohoff Law can significantly help the progress of your case.

Average Wrongful Death Settlement in Florida

Wrongful death cases are, of course, very much based on the facts and circumstances of the underlying death and the relationship of the deceased to the survivors. A responsible lawyer cannot accurately evaluate your claim without a full case review.

Contact Our Tampa Wrongful Death Attorneys Today

When a loved one dies, especially for reasons that make no sense, the survivors struggle to deal with their anguish and the monumental changes in their lives. Don’t try to navigate the complexities of the wrongful death statutes and the intricacies of negotiating with insurance companies on your own.

Let the attorneys at Boohoff Law stand beside you to advocate for the damages you need and deserve from the wrongful death of your loved one. Contact us online today or call (813) 725-5606 for a no-cost initial consultation and case evaluation. Let us help you shoulder the burden of survival and get a financial recovery that will let you move on with your life.

Client Testimonial

“Boohoff Law, Definitely stands behind Integrity the staff is extremely professional. Tatiana is not only a fantastic attorney in her expertise however she’s also down-to-earth, truly a people person. I believe in establishing relationships in any type of business that you do, they definitely bring that to the table. Thank you for all your help in my time of need. I would highly recommend this firm to represent you.”

-Elissa M.

Review: 5/5 ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Boohoff Law P.A. Tampa, Florida Location

829 W Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd
Tampa, FL 33603
Phone: (813) 725-5606

Tampa Wrongful Death FAQs

  • Are there Limitations on Recovery for Wrongful Death?

    Parents might not recover pain and suffering damages if the deceased child was over 25 unless there were no other survivors. If medical malpractice caused the wrongful death, survivors cannot recover pain and suffering damages.

  • How Are Wrongful Death Damages Paid Out?

    Under Florida law, the personal representative has a legal duty to pay the proceeds to the various survivors fairly and equitably. Many lawyers recommend that the personal representative seek court approval of all distributions to survivors and the estate. This will help prevent fights over who got what.

    Boohoff Law’s knowledgeable wrongful death attorneys will work with you regarding the settlement distribution and get court approval for your suggested distributions.

  • Can I Afford a Wrongful Death Lawsuit for My Tampa Loved One?

    Most wrongful death attorneys will handle your case on a contingency fee basis. A contingency fee agreement, which the American Bar Association requires be in writing, will set out the agreement between you and your attorney for the fees in your case. Instead of an hourly fee, your attorney will receive a percentage of your final award.

    The attorney will also pay all of the court costs and other expenses upfront, and the eventual handling of these must also be in your contingency fee agreement.

    Finally, the agreement will provide that your attorney will only receive payment after a successful outcome of your case. The agreement will define the successful outcome and may set different payment amounts depending on when it settles or a court grants an award. 

Recovery is personal.

We recover millions for our clients every month, but we know that every case is different and that recovery is personal.
“Boohoff Law definitely stands behind integrity. Tatiana is not only a fantastic attorney in her expertise, she’s also down-to-earth – truly a people person.”
– Elissa M.
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“Really pleased with Boohoff Law! Received immediate responses when I had any questions. Treated amazingly by all staff … made this process a true breeze!”
– Caitlyn M.
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“Everyone here is so helpful. They jumped through every hoop necessary to get me the settlement I rightfully deserved. They made me feel right at home.”
– Brandy K.

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