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Arizona Wrongful Death Case Guide | Attorney Jesse Guerra

A wrongful death is a tragic situation that no one should have to face alone. Accidents still happen, though, and while the details of each situation are different, one common similarity is that those who have suffered a loss often need the help of a lawyer who can help them get justice and due compensation. Arizona attorney Jesse Guerra, who is affiliated with the experienced and successful Texas firm Carabin Shaw, is one such attorney. Mr. Guerra is a trusted personal injury lawyer serving clients throughout the entire state of Arizona.

If you have recently suffered the loss of a loved one and believe this loss may have been a wrongful death, read through the following Arizona wrongful death case guide to learn more about what steps to take next.

What Does Wrongful Death Mean?

The term “wrongful death” is the legal phrase for a case wherein someone has died due the negligence of someone else’s actions. In this circumstance, the law allows a family member of the deceased to file a claim on their behalf, which is designed to help the surviving family members get compensation for their losses, including the pain and suffering they have experienced. In such a case, your lawyer will try to prove liability; that is, that the defendant's actions — specifically, their negligence — caused the accident and thereby caused the death.

What is Considered Negligence?

From a legal perspective, negligence is a situation wherein someone owes a duty of care to another person and does not uphold that duty. In other words, neglectful or careless action or inaction causes, or fails to prevent, an accident that harms someone. In the case of a wrongful death, this injury obviously leads to that person’s death.

An example of negligence is drunk driving. It is not only against the law, but it is obviously and categorically dangerous to drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. It is reasonable to require people to be sober to drive, and failure to do so is negligent behavior. Drivers owe other drivers (and pedestrians) a duty of care, and driving while intoxicated breaches that duty.

Negligence can take a variety of forms, for example:

  • A worker at a retail store fails to clean up a spill, or put a visible marker about a spill, leading to someone falling
  • The owner of a swimming pool doesn’t adequately protect the grounds of the pool and a child accidentally drowns
  • A doctor or other medical personnel engages in severe malpractice that leads to death
  • The foreman of a construction site doesn’t provide safety gear to their employees, or the company doesn’t provide good training

All of these situations are examples of negligent behavior on part of the defendant, and an experienced personal injury lawyer serving clients throughout the state will be able to file a wrongful death case in Arizona.

Can I File A Wrongful Death Claim?

A wrongful death claim can be filed by a family member of the deceased, but there are limitations. In Arizona, the following are allowed to file such a claim in civil court:

  • Child of the deceased
  • Parent or guardian
  • Spouse
  • A personal representative of the deceased, on behalf of the child, parent or guardian, spouse, or estate.

Be aware, however, and note that this specifically doesn’t allow cousins, siblings, grandparents, or common law spouses to file wrongful death claims.

What Should I Do Next?

We understand that personal tragedy such as the death of a loved one can alter your entire life, but you don’t have to face it alone. If you or your family have suffered a tragic loss and you feel you have a wrongful death case in Arizona, contact an attorney right away. Arizona attorney Jesse Guerra specializes in wrongful deaths, as well as swimming pool injuries and Traumatic Brain Injury cases, so he is well-equipped to help handle your case. Read more about him here, or contact Carabin Shaw today at 1-800-555-0101 for a free consultation.

Visits with the Attorney are by appointment only. Main office San Antonio, Texas.

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