Wrongful death

Wrongful Death Attorneys in Lee’s Summit, MO

Compassionate representation for survivors in Missouri

At Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys, we respect the fact that your family is suffering a tremendous loss. While allowing you the time to mourn, our skilled Lee’s Summit wrongful death attorneys work to investigate the accident and determine who is responsible. Whether the negligent party is a doctor, driver, manufacturer, or property owner, our team collaborates with investigators to show how a doctor, driver, manufacturer, or property owner caused your loved one to die. We have a strong track record of success in wrongful death claims and will fight aggressively for the compensation that your family deserves.

What is a wrongful death claim?

If your loved one died because of another person or entity’s negligence, the state of Missouri allows you to seek damages through a wrongful death claim. These lawsuits allow survivors to hold the negligent parties accountable for their actions. They also ensure that a grieving family will not suffer undue financial burdens because of their loss.

The law says:

Whenever the death of a person results from any act, conduct, occurrence, transaction, or circumstance which, if death had not ensued, would have entitled such person to recover damages in respect thereof, the person or party who, or the corporation which, would have been liable if death had not ensued shall be liable in an action for damages, notwithstanding the death of the person injured, which damages may be sued for:

  1. By the spouse or children or the surviving lineal descendants of any deceased children, natural or adopted, legitimate or illegitimate, or by the father or mother of the deceased, natural or adoptive;

  2. If there be no persons in class (1) entitled to bring the action, then by the brother or sister of the deceased, or their descendants, who can establish his or her right to those damages set out in section 537.090 because of the death;

  3. If there be no persons in class (1) or (2) entitled to bring the action, then by a plaintiff ad litem.

What is the difference between a wrongful death claim and a homicide offense?

A wrongful death claim is a civil claim and not a criminal offense. With criminal charges like homicide, the state is responsible for filing charges against the defendant, because the defendant has committed a crime. The burden of proof is high (“beyond a reasonable doubt”), and the result of a guilty verdict is likely prison time, fines, and loss of rights.

Wrongful death claims can be filed by the survivors of the victim or by the victim’s estate regardless of whether criminal charges are filed. The burden of proof is lower (“a preponderance of evidence”), and you don’t have to prove intent: a fatal accident is still fatal, regardless of whether the negligent party intended to hurt anyone.

What are the causes of fatal injuries in Lee’s Summit?

A fatal accident can happen at any time. When that accident is the result of someone else’s negligent or reckless behavior, our Lee’s Summit wrongful death attorneys can help you seek justice. We routinely represent clients and families whose loved ones have died because of:

We also represent clients seeking death benefits through the workers’ compensation system for fatal worksite accidents.

What are the four key elements that must be proven in a wrongful death claim?

For wrongful death claims to be valid, there are four elements that must be proven in court. These four elements are:

  • Duty of care. It must be proven that the defendant owed the victim a duty of care. This could be as a doctor who owes a specific standard of care to a patient, or a manufacturer who owes a specific standard of care to a consumer.
  • Breach of that duty. You must prove that the duty of care was breached by the defendant, usually because of an act of negligence.
  • Causation. It must be proven that the defendant’s breach of duty directly caused the victim’s death. The plaintiff must prove that the defendant’s negligence was either partly or completely responsible for the victim’s death.
  • Damages. The victim’s death must be proven to cost a certain amount of damages that are quantifiable. This element can be proven by expenses like medical expenses, funeral costs, a loss of income, a loss of future earnings, and even a loss of protection and inheritance.

What damages can be awarded in a wrongful death claim in Lee’s Summit?

Some of the damages that survivors can receive from a wrongful death claim include:

  • Economic damages. These are damages that are numerical. Some examples include medical expenses, funeral expenses, loss of income, loss of inheritance, and loss of future earnings.
  • Non-economic damages. These are damages that are intangible. Some examples include pain and suffering, loss of companionship, loss of parental guidance, loss of consortium, loss of enjoyment of life, and emotional distress.

In some cases, you could be entitled to punitive damages, which are designed to punish a wrongdoer.

Do you have a wrongful death lawyer near me?

Our Lee’s Summit office is located at 200 NE Missouri Rd Suite 200. Please call for an appointment. Our law firm also has offices throughout Missouri and Kansas.

At Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys, our wrongful death attorneys understand that your loved one’s death could have been prevented. We also understand that while no award will ever replace your loved one, the parties responsible for your loved one’s death should be held accountable in some fashion. The insurance companies and defense lawyers may understand your grief – but that doesn’t mean they won’t try to deny your claim or pay as little as possible. We can help.

Compassionate Lee’s Summit wrongful death attorneys

Our Lee’s Summit wrongful death lawyers work with investigators, police officers, medical professionals, and witnesses so that the liability of the responsible defendants can be strongly established. We’re able to settle many wrongful death cases because insurance adjusters respect our strong record of obtaining strong jury verdicts when cases don’t settle. To discuss your wrongful death claim, call Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys at 816-471-5111, start a live chat today, or fill out our contact form to schedule your free consultation.