RAMER & HEDRICK, P.C.
PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEYS
WE CAN HELP YOU

WRONGFUL DEATH
CASE SPECIALISTS

LAWYERS PROUDLY REPRESENTING CHATTANOOGA VICTIMS’ FAMILIES

Everyone deserves the right to lead a long and healthy life, but not all Chattanoogans get to realize that right.

When a loved one is killed due to the negligence of another, Ramer & Hedrick, P.C. will work on your behalf to ensure that the negligent party or parties are held responsible for their careless actions. Losing a loved one can be a trying experience that leaves you heartbroken, confused and wondering who you can trust. After just one consultation, we’re confident you’ll understand what our caring Chattanooga wrongful death attorneys can do for you, and how we will help you with each step in the proceedings.

Legal Definition

A wrongful death in Tennessee occurs when one person causes the death of another through some type of fault. That fault can include negligence and recklessness, as well as the intentional actions taken by another person. Examples include:

  • a case involving a distracted driver who used a cell phone to text while behind the wheel.
  • a doctor who operates on a patient while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • a truck driver who struck a vehicle after falling asleep behind the wheel.
  • a pharmacist who knowingly gave the wrong medication to a customer.

Who Can File Suit in Tennessee?

Tennessee only allows close family members to file a wrongful death lawsuit. A husband or wife can file on behalf of his or her spouse, but the executor or administrator of the estate can also file on behalf of the living spouse or any surviving children. The right to file passes to any adult children or parents of an unmarried adult victim who has no spouse at the time of his or her passing. Administrators and executives can file on the behalf of minor children. In some cases, the siblings of the deceased can file. This could occur if the deceased was not married and had no living parents.

Filing Deadline

Despite wrongful death being a more serious type of civil case, the state still uses the same statue of limitations as other injury cases. Following the death of a loved one, you and your attorneys have just one year to state your case and file. With cases involving serious accidents, we often recommend that our clients file an injury claim within the first few months. If; however, your loved one passes away after a case is filed, a Chattanooga wrongful death lawyer can amend the filing to include a new claim.

Documented Compensation

As we review the facts in your wrongful death case, we’ll start with documented compensation. This refers to any bills or expenses that we can prove and document. An example includes medical bills incurred by that individual until his or her death. We can also seek compensation for funeral expenses, including the cost of viewing and the burial. Documented compensation includes wages that person lost prior to his or her death and future earnings potential lost by the family.

Undocumented Compensation

You also have the legal right to seek financial compensation for undocumented items, which most refer to as emotional pain and suffering or distress. In wrongful death cases, we can show that your loved one suffered as a result of the accident or incident. Though we cannot ask for compensation for your own emotional pain, we may file for “value of life.” This lets us show how the loss of that individual will hurt and harm the victim’s loved ones.

How Long Does the Process Take?

One of the most frequently asked questions is also the toughest to answer. The circumstances of each case are unique. How quickly you file, the evidence available and the overall strength of your case can increase or decrease the length of the proceedings. In Chattanooga, contact Ramer & Hedrick, P.C. for a free case evaluation. Let our wrongful death lawyers help you explore your legal options today.