Wrongful Death Attorney in Mount Pleasant, SC
If you have lost a loved one at the hands of another person, Lowcountry Law, LLC, can help you understand your options for getting justice. While the criminal court seeks justice on behalf of the deceased individual, certain survivors of wrongful death victims may also seek justice and compensation for their losses. At Lowcountry Law, we invite you to schedule a free consultation and case evaluation with our wrongful death attorney, who can help you determine what your next decision should be.
We understand the pain and loss of death, so we work vigorously to get our clients significant compensation and deliver it into their hands as quickly as possible. Call our Mount Pleasant office to set up a free consultation with a wrongful death attorney today.
Justice for the Loss of Your Loved One
People pass away every day. It is a natural part of life. Sadly, some of these deaths are directly and unjustifiably caused by others, leaving victims’ loved ones in a world of pain and shock.
If you have lost someone, you understand the finality of death and know that there is nothing that can bring your loved one back. However, you may be entitled to financial relief from your economic and non-economic losses. A wrongful death attorney may be able to help.
Wrongful death sometimes occurs long after the accident that causes it. For example, a car accident victim may survive days, months, or years after the wreck before they pass away from their injuries. The treatment they receive before dying is usually costly, time-consuming, and strains families to their financial limits.
When a breadwinner dies, their dependents lose out on valuable resources needed to cover basic living costs, such as housing, food, clothing, education, and transportation. If a deceased individual was expected to have many more years of work, then a wrongful death takes years of income away from the family.
According to a report by the National Funeral Director Association (NFDA), the average cost of a funeral and burial in 2021 was roughly $7,000. Add these to other end-of-life costs, and you are easily into five digits.
Under South Carolina law, only certain individuals may seek compensation through a wrongful death claim on behalf of a deceased individual. Their administrator or executor will file the case on behalf of the eligible parties, which may include their:
- Wife or husband
- Parents, if there are no children or spouse
In the event there are no children, spouses, or parents, the decedent’s legal heirs will be the beneficiary of the wrongful death claim. If no administrator or executor has been appointed in a will, the court will appoint someone to fill the role. An experienced wrongful death attorney will help you navigate this process if needed.
Distribution of Wrongful Death Benefits
Once a settlement or verdict has been reached, the proceeds are distributed according to South Carolina intestacy laws, which see the surviving spouse getting half of the compensation and award and the other half going to the children. If there are no children, the spouse gets the entire amount and vice-versa.
When the surviving children are minors, they cannot legally be directly awarded the proceeds of a wrongful death suit. As such, a trust is usually established in the child’s name until they reach the age of majority. If there are no children and no spouse, the surviving parents will split the proceeds, pending a probate judge’s approval of the settlement.
How Lowcountry Law Helps You Get Justice for Your Loved One
Lowcountry Law’s wrongful death attorney will handle every aspect of your claim so you have time to grieve and take care of important business. You should not have to go head to head with an insurance company for compensation. Let wrongful death attorney Matthew Breen take the reins for you and pursue the compensation you deserve, just like so many have done in the past.
When Lowcountry Law takes your case, we take care of everything, including:
- Making sure all paperwork is complete and filed
- Calculating damages
- Fiercely negotiating with insurance companies for maximum compensation
- Collecting essential evidence for your wrongful death claim
- Taking your case to trial if necessary
We also hire and consult with top experts when needed, such as when medical malpractice results in a death, and we hire professional investigators to assist us in building your case. If you want effective representation, choose a wrongful death attorney who has been named a SuperLawyer for three years running (2020-2022), and call attorney Matthew Breen at Lowcountry Law today.
Understanding Wrongful Death in South Carolina
Wrongful death describes situations where someone causes the death of another while acting wrongfully, neglectfully, or failing to act when under a duty to do so.
It can happen in any situation where a person, business, or organization owes a duty of care to others and breaches this duty. It also occurs when a person willfully causes the death of another. The following are some common situations that lead to wrongful deaths.
Drivers and riders on the road have a duty to drive in a reasonably safe manner. Failure to do so is negligence, at the very least, and may be considered recklessness. Various types of negligence and recklessness that lead to wrongful deaths include:
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Driving while texting or engaging in some other distraction, like rubbernecking
- Excessive speeding
- Failure to obey traffic signals
- Failure to yield
Driving an improperly maintained vehicle can also lead to deaths. For instance, a commercial truck with bald tires could have a blowout that causes a fatality. At particular risk of death in traffic are motorcyclists, bicycle riders, and pedestrians, all of whom lack a protective shell when they are in traffic. If you lost a loved one due to a traffic accident, contact a wrongful death attorney at our firm for a free consultation. We can help you understand your rights.
Modern-day healers are not perfect. In fact, some studies have medical malpractice as a leading cause of death in the U.S., which makes some sense given the delicate nature of many treatments and their diagnoses. Medical doctors, chiropractors, and osteopaths, as well as nurses, technicians, and other healthcare professionals, can commit medical malpractice.
There are thousands of dangerous products on the market. But they are not always the ones that harm consumers. Seemingly innocuous products with a flaw can cause serious injuries and even death. In general, these flaws are either design flaws, flaws in the manufacture, assembly, or installation of a product, or a flaw in the warning, advertising, or instructions accompanying a product.
In 2019 and 2020, there were 5,333 and 4,764 fatal on-the-job accidents. Some of the more dangerous jobs include:
- Commercial trucking
- Oil and gas rig work
- Oil and gas field work
- Pilot and flight engineer work
- Fishing and hunting
It must be noted that many of the accidents that occur on the job happen on sites that were relatively safe but became unsafe due to negligence.
Most torts are based on negligence, which typically refers to an act or omission not meant to cause harm. However, wrongful death can also be filed as an intentional tort.
For example, someone convicted of murder or voluntary manslaughter may also face a lawsuit for wrongful death. Even if they are acquitted in criminal court, the wrongful death suit may still proceed because wrongful death claims have a lower standard of proof than criminal cases.
Contact a Wrongful Death Attorney at Lowcountry Law for a Free Consultation
Call Lowcountry Law today, and let us help you fight for financial relief and justice for your loved one. Wrongful death attorney Matthew Breen is ready to meet with you and evaluate your case. Many have trusted us, and so can you.