Charlotte Wrongful Death Attorney
Wrongful Death Claims in North Carolina
The sudden death of a loved one is a painful and tragic event no one should have to endure. If you have recently lost someone close to you due to accidental circumstances, you may be able to file a claim for damages against the person or company responsible for your loved one’s death. While no amount of compensation can repair such a grievous wrong, a wrongful death settlement can cover the deceased’s burial expenses and medical bills. A wrongful death settlement will also provide the deceased’s remaining family members with financial support to help them through this tough time, so it may be worth pursuing.
At Bondurant Litigation, our Charlotte wrongful death attorney Joel Bondurant has decades of experience settling wrongful death claims for clients in North and South Carolina. Our legal team understands the ins and outs of such claims and can guide you through the claims process to ensure you receive the maximum compensation available to you and your loved ones. We also understand the fraught nature of such claims and can assure you our compassionate team will be here for you anytime you need us throughout the process.
Learn more by setting up a free case evaluation with our wrongful death attorney today.
What Is Wrongful Death?
Wrongful death is a legal term for civil cases involving a fatality that was caused by the negligence or wrongdoing of another. According to North Carolina Statutes § 28A.18.2, wrongful death occurs “when the death of a person is caused by a wrongful act, neglect, or default of another.”
Negligence is an important component of NC wrongful death claims. You (or your lawyer) must be able to show that a person or entity’s action or lack of action directly contributed to the death of your loved one.
A wrongful death claim must be filed within two years of the decedent’s passing—otherwise, you will lose your right to compensation.
Common Causes of Wrongful Death
Wrongful death can occur without warning at any time. A motorist getting behind the wheel after imbibing several cocktails, an inexperienced surgeon who forgets to double check their patient’s chart before an operation, a contractor ignoring safety regulations on a construction site—any of these people’s negligent decisions can lead to an unfortunate and irreversible loss.
The following are some of the most common causes of wrongful death:
- Motor vehicle accidents, including truck, motorcycle, and pedestrian accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- Medical malpractice, such as surgical errors and birth injuries
- Defective product malfunctions
- Construction and other work-related accidents
- Animal attacks
- Nursing home abuse and neglect
If your loved one was killed by a negligent act in a scenario such as those listed above, contact an attorney right away to see if you have a legitimate wrongful death claim worth pursuing.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in North Carolina?
In North Carolina, only a personal representative, or “executor,” of the deceased person's estate may file wrongful death claims in court.
If the decedent had an estate plan in place at the time of their death, the personal representative has likely already been chosen. If not, the court will appoint someone to act as executor. This will usually be a close, surviving family member of the deceased, such as a spouse, parent, or child.
Though only one person—the executor—may file the claim, they can do so on behalf of all who are eligible to receive damages. Close surviving family members like those mentioned above are likely all eligible to receive compensation, as well as anyone else who can prove they were financially dependent on the decedent at the time of their death.
Don’t overextend yourself. Let our wrongful death lawyer take care of your claim so you can focus on being with your family during this tough time. Call (704) 665-0288 or write to us online to request a free case evaluation.
You and your family should be reimbursed for any expenses directly related to your loved one’s death, such as the cost of a funeral and burial. Damages are also available for non-monetary losses, such as the loss of the decedent’s love and affection.
Damages you and your family may be eligible to receive include:
- The cost of the deceased’s medical expenses, including hospitalization, surgery, pharmacy, and rehabilitation or hospice care resulting from their final injury or illness
- Pain and suffering the deceased endured before their death
- The cost of reasonable funeral and burial expenses
- Lost income the deceased would have reasonably made had they been able to keep working
- Loss of the deceased person's assistance, care, protection, and services
- Loss of guidance, companionship, comfort, and advice
The actual damages you receive will depend on the facts unique to your case, such as how many surviving family members are eligible for recompense, how much money the decadent made before they passed, whether or not you hire a lawyer, and more.
How a Lawyer Can Help
An experienced wrongful death attorney can be a major asset if you have recently lost a loved one. A lawyer will walk you through the claims process, ensure you or the executor accurately represents the decedent’s wishes, check that all paperwork is done correctly, argue your case before a court if needed, and secure the settlement you deserve. If you are grieving the loss of a loved one, having a lawyer take care of your family’s legal issues on your behalf is a consolation.
“Mr. Bondurant has integrity, knows the law, and the limits of our legal system. And, he knows people. He talked clearly with us about our options and guided us through infuriating negotiations to the best outcome available.”- Jeanie F.
“Our experience with Joel was excellent. The process we went through was new to us but Joel did an amazing job of outlining, detailing, and walking us through the process. He offered great legal advice which was spot on.”- Jason L.
“I was referred to Joel by another attorney due to Joel's expertise in litigation. Joel was very responsive to my initial inquiry as well as our subsequent correspondence.”- Ed N.