Details of Wrongful Death Claims in Georgia
Last updated Wednesday, September 28th, 2022
Wrongful Death Claims in Georgia
When another’s actions cause the unexpected loss of your loved one, many questions arise. Is what happened considered wrongful death or just a tragic accident? What’s involved in filing this type of claim? Is there a time limit for filing these kinds of lawsuits in the Peach State?
Who can pursue a wrongful death case? If your court case was successful, how would the proceeds be divided? Would this money be taxed? If so, who would be responsible for paying?
All these types of questions can make this upsetting time even more difficult. The legal system attempts to make victims whole. But confusion lurks around every corner. Enough resources and the right skill set make this ordeal easier.
Having an experienced attorney from Murphy Law Firm can get you the answers you need. We can review your case for free. We’ll let you know if we think we can help you. This unfortunate experience doesn’t have to define you. Our legal team can work to get you compensated and on the road to healing.
FAQs about Wrongful Death Claims
Who Gets the Money in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Georgia?
If someone dies due to the negligence of another person or company, the surviving family members may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit. In Georgia, the money from a successful wrongful death lawsuit goes to the deceased person’s estate.
This state sees filing and getting compensated differently. Just because a person files this type of claim doesn’t mean they’re necessarily in line to get part of the proceeds. Let’s look at this example:
Dan died due to medical malpractice. This widower was a single dad of two children in college. His brother filed a wrongful death claim against the hospital. The court-awarded compensation was for the children’s education funds, not Dan’s brother.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Georgia?
In the state of Georgia, a wrongful death claim can be filed by the surviving spouse, children, or parents of the deceased. If there is no surviving spouse, child, or parent, then a claim can be filed by the personal representative of the deceased’s estate.
Making a plan of action can help you cope if you’ve been impacted by this type of devastating loss. It’s important to know what legal steps you can take to help minimize the financial hardship this sad time has caused.
Knowing which relatives can file this type of claim can save time, money, and needless aggravation. Carefully following Georgia’s guidelines can set you up for success. Still, have questions? Let us look over your case details. Not every case falls into state-mandated parameters and that’s okay. We still need to make sure every “I” is dotted and each “T” is crossed.
How Long do You Have to File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Georgia?
In the state of Georgia, a wrongful death lawsuit must be filed within two years of the date of death. Now, in theory, this stretch of time may sound like there’s no rush. But in reality, the sooner you can get a claim filed, the better off your case will be.
Undecided? Contact an attorney as soon as possible. Meeting with the Murphy Law Firm can get you thinking about your best course of action. Learning about your case allows us to iron out any potential wrinkles.
How is Wrongful Death Defined in the State of Georgia?
In the state of Georgia, wrongful death is defined as the death of a person caused by the negligence or other wrongful act of another person. Georgia Code § 51-4-1 classifies these cases as those where a human life ends as a direct result of another’s criminal, negligent, or reckless act.
What types of deaths can be considered wrongful death? Swimming through these murky waters can be difficult at best. Having a shrewd attorney on your side serves to protect your best interests while avoiding wasting time.
Can You Sue a Dead Person in Georgia?
No, you cannot sue a dead person in Georgia. But all is not lost! Depending on the situation, you may be able to file a claim against the deceased’s estate. You could potentially be treated as a creditor against the estate.
The route of suing an estate can be a knockdown, drag-out fight. Juries tend to think twice before awarding damages when survivors are left. This is one more example demonstrating the importance of legal representation.
What Happens to a Settlement When a Person Dies?
A settlement is a distribution of assets from a deceased person’s estate. Probate allows the court to distribute estate assets to the beneficiaries named in the deceased person’s will. If the deceased person did not have a will, the assets are distributed according to the laws of the state in which the person died.
An executor handles the estate when the decedent leaves a will. If there is no will, an administrator must take on this role. These personal representatives pay any taxes, liens, or other owed monies. Assets can then be distributed to rightful beneficiaries.
Are Survival Action Proceeds Taxable?
There is no definitive answer to this question as it depends on the specific circumstances and laws of the jurisdiction in question. However, in general, survival action proceeds are not considered to be taxable income. This is because they are typically awarded to compensate the victim for damages sustained, rather than to provide them with a windfall profit.
Wrongful death suits are normally tax-free. Survival action damages aren’t as clear-cut because this money is awarded for a different purpose. An award covering funeral costs, financial support, and loss of companionship may come to a family member from a wrongful death settlement.
Damages from a survival action claim can be considered a personal injury claim that the decedent could have filed had they lived. Such compensation could be for pain and suffering, related medical bills, and funeral expenses. Money recovered this way goes to the decedent’s estate before individual awards can get distributed.