When you lose a spouse or a child to senseless act of negligence, you may be blind-sided by the grief and the pain of their loss. In some cases, however, you may be entitled to damages for the wrongful death of your loved one.
We know that many people find the idea of a lawsuit distasteful, and many people we have spoken with over the last 60 years are ashamed to look into filing a claim. We understand that entirely. Here is what you should know: sometimes, the only way to force a company, entity or person to take responsibility for their negligence is to make a legal claim against them. Wrongful death lawsuits cannot replace your loved one, but they can ensure that your children keep a roof over their heads and food in their mouths, and they can force negligent parties to be accountable for the actions. It can also prevent that person or company from causing another family to experience the same hurt and grief that you do.
So, which types of fatal accidents are most likely to result of someone else’s negligence? These are the most common accidents resulting in wrongful death claims in Oklahoma:
- Car or truck accidents. Whether the crash was caused by a drunk driver, someone who was speeding recklessly, or in a collision with a large, commercial truck. The driver at-fault in the traffic crash may be held liable for the loss of your loved one.
- Defective products. Manufacturers owe a duty of care to their customers to sell safe and effective products. When a person suffers a fatal injury because a product was defective, their loved ones may be able to take legal action against the manufacturer and all of the entities in the chain of commerce.
- Medical malpractice. When doctors or other medical professionals act in a way that breaches the accepted standard of care for their profession, they may be held liable for the losses that result from their negligence.
- Dangerous drugs. Far too often, the drugs that we expect are going to help and heal us actually end up harming us instead. When a dangerous or defective drug causes the death of a patient, their surviving loved ones may be able to take legal action against the drug manufacturer.
- Workplace accidents. In most cases, a workplace accident would be covered by the employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. However, in some cases, such as when a third-party’s negligence is responsible for the death, the family may also recover compensation for their loss through a wrongful death action against the responsible party.
The statute of limitations, which is the legal time limit for filing a wrongful death claim in Oklahoma, is generally two years from the date of death. Any legal action taken beyond this time limit will not be eligible to recover compensation.
If you have lost a loved one because of a preventable accident, the compassionate Oklahoma wrongful death lawyers at Stipe Law Firm are here to represent your interests. We invite you to call (918) 505-7741 or fill out our contact form for a free case review in our McAlester office.