Cheyenne Wrongful Death Lawyer

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What Constitutes A Wrongful Death Case In Wyoming?

A wrongful death claim is a claim for damages based on the negligent or unlawful actions of an allegedly liable party. The claim seeks compensation for various losses associated with the death and subsequent absence of a family member. However, only the decedent’s death representative may file the actual lawsuit. 

There are, unfortunately, many circumstances that lead to wrongful death in Wyoming. At Bachus & Schanker, we fight for the well-being of those left behind after terrible losses caused by:

  • Traffic accidents
  • Medical malpractice
  • Intentional or reckless violence
  • Work accidents
  • Defective products
  • Accidents from recreational activities
  • Premises liability accidents, such as drownings and slip-and-fall accidents

Victims’ family members and representatives are urged to take swift action for compensation in these cases. The window for filing a wrongful death lawsuit is only two years and begins closing the moment a person dies.

How Does A Wyoming Wrongful Death Case Work, And What Is The Process?

After a person is killed, their family members may seek compensation for damages through a wrongful death suit filed by the decedent’s death representative. Within this claim, four elements must be established.

Duty of Care

A duty of care is a legal responsibility to behave in a certain manner toward others for safety’s sake. For example, auto drivers must drive in a reasonably safe fashion to prevent harming others. 

Breach of Duty

A breach of duty occurs when a party fails to uphold their duty of care. A wrongful death claim must point to a specific act or failure to act that constitutes a breach of a duty. This means that a claim alleging a driver killed their loved one must identify an actual breach of duty, such as failure to signal or speeding. 

Causation

The wrongful death claim must also show precisely how the breach of duty caused the death. It is not enough to simply make the allegation. In some cases, more than one cause may factor into the equation. For example, a drunk driver and a speeder might be jointly responsible for a wrongful death.

Damages

Finally, the claim must show that the death has led to compensable damages. In wrongful death cases, compensable damages include economic and non-economic damages. Without damages, the reason for the lawsuit is non-existent.

How Is The Value Of A Cheyenne Wrongful Death Case Determined?

Wyoming wrongful death cases are valued by taking the total of all compensable losses. In some states, there are caps on non-economic damages, but not in Wyoming. The state constitution prohibits caps on compensable damages stemming from injury or death. 

Compensatory damages in Wyoming cases cover both economic and non-economic losses, including:

  • Funeral and burial costs
  • Property loss
  • Medical and hospital bills
  • Lost income
  • Pain and suffering of the deceased before dying
  • The family’s pain and suffering after death
  • Loss of future earnings
  • Loss of guidance and support

Additionally, if a wrongful death comes about by particularly egregious actions, the defendant may be held to pay punitive damages in addition to compensatory damages.

How Can One File A Wyoming Wrongful Death Claim?

Filing a wrongful death claim requires the deceased’s representative to present the paperwork to the court in their name. However, before a lawsuit, the insurance company or companies involved may attempt to settle.

Victims’ family members and representatives should seek legal counsel promptly before speaking to any insurance company. Cheyenne’s wrongful death attorneys ensure insurance companies don’t get away with paying reduced amounts or unreasonable claim rejections. 

If settlement negotiations do not resolve the case, the next steps will be to file a lawsuit and begin the discovery process. During discovery, evidence may come to light that leads the insurance company to settle or vice versa. If not, the parties may go to trial or attempt alternative dispute resolution. 

Throughout the entire process, your wrongful death lawyer will be vigorously safeguarding your right to compensation.

Who Pays For A Wrongful Death Attorney?

Ultimately, your wrongful death attorney will be paid from the settlement you receive. Regarding the amount of these fees, wrongful death attorney fees vary significantly from case to case. In the vast majority of cases, wrongful death attorneys do not get paid unless you get compensated.

Why Hire A Cheyenne Wrongful Death Attorney?

The wrongful death claim process is not victim-friendly. In fact, liable parties and their insurance companies tend to do everything in their power to avoid paying what they owe, even when the fault is blatant. 

In most cases, claimants do not stand a chance against insurance companies when they go at it alone. They are often unaware of their rights and the many forms of compensation they are entitled to pursue. At Bachus & Schanker, we uncover every dollar you are owed and vigorously fight to recover it.

Beyond getting the compensation our wrongful death clients need, we also seek to support the decedents’ family members during this tough time. Part of our services include aid and support for victims of egregious or criminal action. 

If you are dealing with the pain from the loss of a loved one, Bachus & Schanker is ready to listen and fight. We firmly believe in accountability and justice through compensation and can go to bat for what you deserve. 

Sources:

Fatality Crash Summary.

Funeral Costs.

How Courts Work. (2021).

Wyoming Rules of Civil Procedure.

You Deserve Fair Compensation

Don’t let the insurance companies intimidate you into accepting less than you deserve. We’re ready to fight for you.