The start of the Colorado Springs wrongful death case process is called the complaint. These claims begin whenever somebody alleges that they lost a loved one because of another person, and therefore, are entitled to receive compensation. Most wrongful death cases involve an insurance company that has agreed to pay for the loss in the event of a wrongful death. That may be an auto insurance company, property insurance provider, or any other insurance company.
While an attorney can enter the picture at any point in a claim, and it is best to contact them early. They could help claimants avoid pitfalls when talking to the opposing insurance company, decide whether to pursue damages or solatium, understand damage caps, estimate future income of the lost loved one, and handle the stress of the case while the plaintiff grieves.
The process for investigating a fatal accident varies depending on the facts of the case. Investigation of liability can be minimal in some cases with an obvious at-fault party. For example, Colorado Springs has a Major Accident Unit to investigate cases in which a car accident caused someone to die. The lawyer’s investigation process in these situations may be a matter of calling on an investigating officer from that unit to testify regarding their findings.
However, if it looks like the deceased may have been at fault, the insurance company may try to exaggerate this argument and thereby reduce how much money they must pay. In these situations, an attorney may need an investigative team or accident reconstruction expert to develop evidence of liability and the amount of damages that were incurred.
Additionally, a lawyer may use experts to determine appropriate compensation for damages like future lost income, the psychological effects experienced by the family members, and more.
In some wrongful death cases, the evidence gathered may be the same as that in a personal injury claim. However, the wrongful death claim may have more emphasis on the losses that the deceased’s family members experienced.
The duration of a wrongful death claim depends on many factors. It can be short if there is little insurance available, or it can be long if there are many facts that are in dispute. Usually, the case process for a wrongful death case in Colorado Springs takes about nine months to a year before the claim gets to trial. Most cases last roughly one year, though the process may take several years if it is highly contested or goes to appeal.
In Colorado Springs, the wrongful death claim process is complete when both parties reach a settlement agreement or a jury awards compensation. The insurance company can pay out a certain amount of money to the claimant in a settlement, ending the claim. Alternatively, a jury may award a certain amount of money to the deceased’s family. When all appeals of that award are complete or the time limit for them passes, the claim is over.
Losing a loved one is difficult. The last thing you should be worrying about is handling the claims process and how to best build your case. The compassionate attorney at our firm could help you and your family during this trying time in your life. For more information about the Colorado Springs wrongful death case process, call today.