Loved ones who have lost a family member in a devastating car crash caused by an at-fault party are desperate for justice. Fortunately, the law provides a legal recourse option via a wrongful death lawsuit. Texas law allows civil claims against parties that cause someone’s death via negligence, omissions, unskillfulness or default.
While the knowledge that family members can potentially take legal action can be of comfort, the process of achieving this end often remains confusing.
Who typically has the right to initiate a wrongful death lawsuit in Texas?
Multiple parties could pursue a wrongful death claim
When it comes to a wrongful death claim, Texas extends rights to numerous parties. Close family members have priority consideration. The spouse of the deceased is often the one to pursue a wrongful death claim. Texas law also specifically mentions the rights of children and surviving parents.
When do proceeds go out after a wrongful death claim?
Technically, there are different types of compensation loved ones can pursue in a wrongful death case. First, family members can pursue compensation to recoup the income the deceased would have earned had they not passed. They can pursue other losses as well, such as loss of consortium. Second, family members can pursue survival actions, or losses the deceased party could have claimed compensation for if they had survived.
Typically, specific beneficiary family members can receive proceeds immediately from the lawsuit to recoup their losses. Alternately, proceeds relating to successful survival actions will go through estate administration and then get disbursed to family thereafter.
Those with questions about their specific circumstance should reach out to a qualified attorney with knowledge handling these cases.