When a person dies due to someone else’s negligent or intentional act, the law considers this a “wrongful” death. The Colorado Wrongful Death Act allows the surviving relatives of a deceased victim to recover compensation for their losses. There is a lot of confusion about how the law actually works and who can recover compensation. People also often wonder what kinds of cases are most likely to lead to a wrongful death. The following five types of cases are among the most common wrongful death cases brought by relatives who have lost loved ones.
#1 Medical Malpractice Claims
According to a landmark research study at Johns Hopkins Medicine, as many as a quarter of a million people are killed each year due to medical errors. When compared to other common causes of death, this would make medical negligence the third most common cause of death in America, just below heart disease, and an occurrence that takes nearly 100,000 more lives than respiratory disease.
#2 Nursing Home Negligence
Akin to medical negligence, nursing home negligence cases are still a large share of wrongful death claims filed each year. There are likely a lot of reasons for this. One reason may be that the victims are often fragile, vulnerable, and already in a weakened condition. Indeed, nursing home residents are citizens in the greatest need of high-quality care. Therefore, it is even that much more troubling when their caregivers and trusted health providers fail to meet the basic standards of care. Nursing home neglect can take the form of:
- Falls and fractures
- Medication errors
- Delayed transfer to the hospital
#3 Auto Accidents
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, about 35,000 to 40,000 people lose their lives in auto accidents each year. These include motorcycle and semi-truck accidents. While these numbers have actually declined since the 1970s, the number of highway fatalities is still staggering.
#4 Construction Site Injuries
Perhaps some of the most dangerous and hazardous worksites are construction zones. Hazards can be as endless as one’s imagination. Workers and innocent members of the community can both be impacted by these tragic accidents. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that roughly 1,200 workplace deaths occur each year in construction sites. However, this number may not fully reflect the entire scope.
#5 Intentional Homicides and Attacks
Each year, the CDC reports nearly 18,000 homicides nationally. Intentional manslaughter and homicide account for many wrongful deaths. Sadly, there is not always a way to recover financial compensation when a criminal chooses to take a life. However, there are situations where the assailant was employed by a large company or where the wrongdoer has significant financial assets that can be attached through a wrongful death lawsuit.
Know Your Rights in a Colorado Wrongful Death Claim
The law gives certain rights to surviving next-of-kin. Survivors may include spouses, children, and other close relatives who have a direct relationship to the decedent. Compensation can include money for the following types of damages incurred by surviving relatives:
- Final expenses
- Medical bills
- Lost income and support
- Loss of companionship
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
To learn more about your rights and find out if you might be entitled to financial compensation, call the Springs Law Group today for a free case evaluation.