Wrongful Death Resulting from a Las Cruces Car Accident
Losing a loved one is overwhelming in any circumstance. There are funeral arrangements to take care of, paperwork to deal with, and grief which can take a significant emotional toll on you and your family. When the death of your loved one is caused by an auto accident, all of these stressors are compounded. If you’ve lost a family member or loved one in a car accident in Las Cruces, read on to find out how a Carabin Shaw lawyer can help.What is Wrongful Death?
New Mexico Statutes Section 42-2-1 defines wrongful death as a death “caused by the wrongful act, neglect or default of another.” A car accident is a common situation where someone else’s negligence may be to blame for the death of your loved one. The accident may involve large trucks, motorcycles, personal vehicles, or even a pedestrian.
Determining whether another party was responsible, whether by neglect or an intentional act, can be difficult. A wrongful death lawyer serving Las Cruces, New Mexico, can be invaluable in figuring out if you have a wrongful death claim when you’re dealing with the emotional and financial stresses of the sudden death of a loved one.Who Benefits from a Wrongful Death Suit?
Consulting an attorney in Las Cruces is the best way to find out whether you are eligible to file a lawsuit for wrongful death resulting from a Las Cruces car accident. Suits resulting from auto injury and wrongful death are similar, except that the wrongful death suit is filed by a personal representative of the decedent instead of by an injured party. Also, judgments in an auto injury suit are awarded to the injured person whereas there are specific provisions for how a judgment is divided among the heirs in a wrongful death suit. Generally speaking, a spouse, parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, or sibling of the decedent can benefit from damages awarded in a wrongful death suit.
If you lose a loved one and think you might file a wrongful death claim in Las Cruces, there are certain things you should be aware of even before you consult an attorney. After the death of a family member in a car accident in Las Cruces, you should save any paperwork related to expenses you or other family members incur. As wrongful death damages, New Mexico courts may award the beneficiaries compensation for any number of expenses or suffering stemming from the accident that caused your loved one’s death. In order for your lawyer to get you the compensation you deserve, you should save receipts or paperwork related to any and all of the following:
- Medical expenses of the decedent
- Funeral expenses
- Therapy or other psychological care of the survivors of the decedent
- Evidence of lost wages
- Correspondence with insurance companies of any kind, including medical and life insurance companies
- Police reports
- Statements from witnesses
For a wrongful death lawsuit, New Mexico has a statute of limitations generally no later than three years from the date of the death of your loved one. If the negligent party is a governmental entity or someone acting on behalf of a governmental entity, the statute of limitations is even shorter—six months, in most cases. Although there can be exceptions that extend the statute of limitations in certain circumstances, these exceptions are not common. Contacting a Las Cruces wrongful death attorney as soon as possible after the loss of your family member will ensure that you file a wrongful death suit within the parameters prescribed by law.Experienced Attorneys Serving Las Cruces
If you’ve lost a family member in a car accident, Las Cruces personal injury lawyers can provide expert legal advice. Even though it may be difficult to think about a lawsuit when you’re overwhelmed by grief and loss, call a Carabin Shaw attorney at 915-779-2301. We’ll make sure you receive the compensation you deserve.