Who Is Eligible To Sue For Wrongful Death In Arizona?
Helpful Guide To Wrongful Death Lawsuit
If someone you know dies due to another person’s wrongful actions, can you sue for their death? In Arizona, the answer is yes. Wrongful death lawsuits can be filed by anyone injured, psychologically traumatized, or with a damaged property because of negligence.
Several factors determine whether or not you are eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Arizona. These factors include whether you were injured physically, emotionally, or financially because of the negligence. If you meet the eligibility requirements, filing a wrongful death lawsuit may be the best way to get justice for your loved one.
In any case, you should always contact a Glendale criminal defense lawyer and read the following guide.
What Does “Wrongful Death” Mean In Arizona?
A “wrongful death” in Arizona is defined as one caused “by wrongful act, negligence, or default.” (12-611 (2021) Arizona Revised Statute) In other terms, a wrongful death happens when someone passes away as a result of another party’s legal wrongdoing, such as:
- A purposeful act,
- A negligent act (like a car accident),
- Or medical malpractice (including a crime).
Arizona’s Liability For Wrongful Death (A.R.S 12-611)
The spouse, child, parent, or estate of a decedent may bring a wrongful death claim if a family member dies as a result of an action or inaction that would give rise to a personal injury lawsuit.
In most cases, it indicates that the person, business, or governmental body has acted carelessly. Negligence is the failure to take reasonable precautions to stop foreseeable harm to others. This could be driving excessively quickly and triggering a collision or failing to fix a damaged stair.
In some cases, a wrongful death claim may be founded only on strict responsibility (i.e. liability without fault). When a party violates a public safety law, this act may support the “negligence per se” legal theory. A Mesa criminal defense lawyer is extremely necessary in these cases to receive proper guidance.
The “negligence per se” legal theory states that, depending on the situation, a party may be strictly accountable when they violate a law or ordinance meant to protect the public and inflict harm or death.
Another situation in which strict liability may apply to a wrongful death lawsuit under the Arizona Wrongful Death Statute is deaths caused by defective products.
If an individual is involved in a fatal collision caused by a defective car or suffers fatal injuries caused by other badly designed items, an entity in the product’s production may be accountable. A wrongful death lawsuit’s strict responsibility defense may also depend on a product’s inadequate labeling.
Who Is Eligible To Seek Compensation Under The Provisions Of Arizona’s Wrongful Death Law (A.R.S. 12-612)?
Arizona law stipulates that the following parties may bring a wrongful death claim in the state’s civil courts:
- The surviving spouse of the deceased
- Any living child of the deceased person
- A living guardian or parent of the deceased person, or
- The deceased person’s representative (called an “executor” in some states) if none of those people survived the deceased.
We always recommend contacting an East Valley criminal defense lawyer before filing the wrongful death claim, who can guide the person through the proper course of action.
Arizona’s Statute Of Limitations On Wrongful Death
The statute of limitations is the deadline for filing a lawsuit to keep it from being dismissed. We recommend filing a wrongful death case in Arizona within two years of the decedent’s passing. The wisest course of action is to get legal counsel right away because evidence can be lost and other deadlines may apply.
If a public institution, such as a school district, municipality, or the State of Arizona, was negligent, then certain timing criteria and processes are necessary. After the “Cause of Action” accrues, a “Notice of Claim” must be submitted within 180 days, and a lawsuit must be started within one year.
However, there may be circumstances that toll (postpone) these deadlines, so it’s crucial to consult an attorney with experience in these cases.
Contact Our Arizona Well-Experienced Lawyers
We cordially encourage you to schedule a free consultation with My AZ Lawyers to address your concerns and assess your legal claim. When you hire an Avondale wrongful death attorney from our office, you can anticipate the empathetic, caring representation you require from a group of skilled trial attorneys. If a trial is necessary to get the case result in our client requires, we are always ready. Call us now!
LISTEN TO THE PODCAST VERSION OF THIS ARTICLE
20325 N 51st Avenue Suite #134, Building 5
Glendale, AZ 85308
Office: (602) 509-0955
2 East Congress St., Suite #900-6A
Tucson, AZ 85701
Office: (520) 441-1450
12725 W. Indian School Rd., Ste E, #101
Avondale, AZ 85392
Office: (623) 469-6603