Wrongful Death Attorney In Queens

Searching for a Reliable Wrongful Death Attorney in New York?

A wrongful death claim is rarely a simple ordeal. First, someone has to be empowered to act on behalf of the deceased (also called “decedent”) by New York State Surrogate’s Court in one of the counties, such as Queens or the Bronx. The person appointed is the “executor” if the decedent left a will; the “administrator” if the decedent died without a will. If the deceased person left relatives and/or children behind, maybe from several marriages or in other states or countries, the Surrogate’s Court proceeding can become complicated. After that appointment is made – usually of a family member – then the facts of the case and cause of the wrongful death have to carefully be analyzed by an experienced attorney.

Any of the many types of accidents that can lead to serious personal injury in the event of negligence can result in the death of an accident victim, including everything from car accidents to workplace incidents. There are two types of money damages permitted by New York State law in a death accident case. They include conscious pain and suffering, as well as pecuniary loss.

Conscious Pain and Suffering

For the injuries and losses suffered by decedent before his or her death. Factors considered include the amount of time the decedent lived and did he or she “suffer” – for example was the decedent conscious and aware? Did the decedent act as if he or she was in pain? Was he or she moaning or receiving pain medication in the hospital?

If someone live for a while after a painful injury such as a burn, they may be found to have suffered a lot and their Estate may receive a large monetary award. If someone dies instantly, they may not be awarded damages for conscious pain and suffering.

Unlike in some other states, there is no claim in New York for “loss of enjoyment of life” by the decedent; however, in some cases, punitive damages may be awarded – if the death was caused by outrageous or brutal conduct, that would “shock the senses.”

Pecuniary Loss

Compensates the decedent’s survivors (usually the family) for the economic loss suffered by his or her death. To calculate the loss amount, New York courts consider what would have happened if the person had not died. Factors taken into account include:

  • Pre-death medical care, nursing, hospital and other care;
  • Funeral expenses;
  • Expected future, lifetime earnings – based upon past earnings, promotions, etc.;
  • How long decedent could have been expected to live (life expectancy) – there are charts and tables that give this hypothetical age, based on age at date of death, education and occupation.;
  • Taxes (reduce the amount);
  • Fringe benefits, such as pension, health insurance, Social Security benefits; and,
  • Value of unpaid household services to family’s life.

Under New York law, there can be no recovery of monetary damages for deprivation of a deceased spouse's love and companionship.

Need a compassionate Queens wrongful death lawyer? For this type of serious case, you need legal representation from a qualified attorney at our firm. Contact us for your free consultation.

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