Milwaukee Wrongful Death Attorney
When a spouse, child, or other family member has died as a result of someone else’s negligence, whether through a Milwaukee car accident or some other form of negligence, the legal system may provide you with a means of recovering compensation for the loss of your loved one.
If you have lost a family member in a preventable accident, then the time to start exploring your legal options is now. At Mingo & Yankala, S.C., we understand that no amount of money could ever make up for a tragedy like this, but do believe that the financial impact of these incidents should be rectified by those responsible. Our award-winning Milwaukee wrongful death lawyers have recovered millions for our clients and are ready to help you compellingly assert the gravity of your loss both in and outside the courtroom.
Reach out to us today. Use our online form to request a free case evaluation.
Help When you Need it Most
When you are dealing with the emotional and financial challenges that come with a wrongful death lawsuit, you need a trusted attorney you can rely on throughout the claims process.
- We understand how important wrongful death cases are to families and work tirelessly to secure the best possible outcome. At the same time, we understand how difficult wrongful death cases can be for families. Our goal is to ease your burden and allow you to grieve for your loved one while we take care of the legal process.
- Our Milwaukee personal injury attorneys provide the personal attention our clients deserve and put in the resources necessary for their cases to be successful.
- Our law firm focuses on getting the most for our clients. This means we are never afraid to bring a case to trial. We genuinely care for our clients and want them to obtain full and fair restitution for their damages. If bringing your case to trial is in your best interests, we’re ready to advocate for you.
Find out more about how we can help your family through these difficult times when you contact our office to discuss your case.
What are Milwaukee Wrongful Death Claims?
In Wisconsin, wrongful death is defined as the death of a person that is caused by a wrongful act, neglect, or default. In these cases, the surviving family members have the right to pursue a civil lawsuit against the individual or entity who is found to be liable for the death of their loved one. If this happens, you can be awarded compensation for specific damages under the Wisconsin wrongful death statute.
Wrongful death lawsuits are much different from any criminal charges the liable party may face. If the liable party is facing criminal charges, these criminal charges will be brought forward by the state’s prosecuting attorney. Here, the prosecuting attorney will be seeking criminal penalties through a conviction. This might include fines and jail or prison time, among other penalties.
It should also be noted that the burden of proof is different in wrongful death and criminal cases. In order for the state to obtain a conviction in a criminal case, they need to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. However, the burden of proof is much less in civil cases. Instead, your attorney will need to prove liability based on a preponderance of the evidence that the defendant is liable for the decedent’s passing.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Milwaukee?
In Wisconsin, only certain people are allowed to file a claim on behalf of the deceased. Under WI Stat § 895.04, the personal representative of the decedent’s estate must file the claim. This could be a surviving family member based on the relationship to the decedent, or it could be anyone the decedent named to represent their estate in their will. Family members who may have the right to pursue a Milwaukee wrongful death claim include, in the following order:
- The decedent’s surviving spouse
- The decedent’s children or grandchildren
- The decedent’s parents
- The decedent’s grandparents
- The decedent’s siblings
If you have concerns surrounding whether you have the authority to pursue the wrongful death claim of your loved one, contact our office as soon as possible to discuss your legal options.
Time Limit for Milwaukee Wrongful Death Claims
The deadlines for filing wrongful death claims in Milwaukee are strict. Under the Wisconsin statute of limitations statute WI Stat § 893.54, the vast majority of wrongful death claims will need to be filed before the three-year statute of limitations expires. However, this deadline can be cut short to as few as two years if the decedent in question passed away due to a car accident injury.
Since the statute of limitations and time limits can often be confusing and different for every person’s case, it is critical that you get an experienced wrongful death attorney to handle your case so that issues of this nature do not become a problem in your wrongful death claim.
What Damages Are Available for Wrongful Death Cases in Milwaukee?
Under WI Stat § 895.03, The State of Wisconsin allows the court to award compensation in these cases to address a number of different damages and losses. This is good news for plaintiffs who are not only emotionally devastated by the loss of their loved one but have also had their financial future threatened by the death, as well.
Damages that can be claimed in a wrongful death claim include:
- Medical expenses
- Funeral expenses
- Loss of future earnings
- Loss of inheritance
- Loss of society and companionship
- Any pain and suffering the victim experienced before death
We recently recovered a very favorable settlement for four minor children whose father was killed in a motorcycle accident. All four children will be provided with periodic payments over the course of their lifetime. Each case, of course, is different and must be evaluated on the basis of its own unique facts.
There are two major points surrounding damages that it is important to note for family members who may be seeking compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit. The first is that there are caps on the amount of damages you can recover for loss of society and companionship— up to $350,000 for an adult decedent, and up to $500,000 for a minor decedent.
You should also keep in mind that wrongful death lawsuits in the state of Wisconsin do not allow for the award of punitive damages. These are often awarded in cases where the actions of the defendants are found to be reprehensible or abhorrent. However, they are not available in wrongful death claims.
Any compensation that is awarded will be subject to the decedent’s surviving family. This means if the decedent had a surviving spouse or children, a certain amount of damages will be set aside to care for the decedent’s minor children.
Contact a Wrongful Death Lawyer in Milwaukee
Dealing with the death of a loved one is never easy. However, hiring an attorney can help you get justice for your family member. At Mingo & Yankala, S.C. , our Milwaukee wrongful death attorneys are here for you. We are ready to listen and to begin work on your behalf. Call today for a free and confidential case evaluation at 414-273-7400.