Who can file a wrongful death claim? How much money can you get? These are questions you will have when a loved one dies.
Who Is Eligible To File a Wrongful Death Claim?
In Michigan, wrongful death lawsuits can be filed by the estate of the deceased person. The personal representative of the deceased person’s estate may file the wrongful death claim.
Only monetary damages can be recovered.
Further, only certain family members can collect money from this type of lawsuit, including:
- The spouse of the deceased
- A child of the deceased
- A grandparent of the deceased
- A grandchild of the deceased
- A child of the deceased person’s spouse (stepchild)
- A person who was left property in the deceased person’s will
If none of these people are available, then anyone eligible to inherit the estate may collect wrongful death damages.
How Do I Know if I Have a Wrongful Death Claim?
A “wrongful death” is one that was caused by a “wrongful act, neglect, or fault of another.”
Some examples of wrongful deaths include:
Typically, if the deceased person could have made a personal injury claim if they were alive, you can file a wrongful death claim.
Time Limitations on Wrongful Death Claims
There are time limits on how long you have to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Michigan. It must be filed no more than three years after the date of death.
The personal representative who filed the claim must notify other family members of the lawsuit within 30 days of file. Once notified, all eligible family members have 60 days to notify the estate of damages they suffered due to the wrongful death. If no notice is provided within those 60 days, their claims may not be included in the case.
How Much Money Can I Get for a Wrongful Death Claim?
The amount of money you can get in a wrongful death claim depends on how much you have lost due to the death. Generally, you can get compensation for:
- Funeral costs
- Burial expenses
- Medical bills of the deceased before death
- Loss of income contribution
- Loss of inheritance