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Can criminal violence lead to wrongful death lawsuits?

On Behalf of | Apr 13, 2021 | Wrongful Death

Losing a loved one unexpectedly is never easy, but when that loss is the result of senseless criminal behavior, you may struggle even more to accept your loss. The decision to break the law by one person can have a ripple effect that influences many others.

Deciding to mug someone or drive while drunk could lead to someone causing the death of another individual. If a criminal event led to your loved one’s death, do you have the right to take legal action yourself, or is prosecution the only form of justice available to you?

When do you have grounds for a wrongful death suit?

If your loved one could have brought a personal injury claim if they had survived, then you and other family members likely have grounds for a lawsuit now after their death. The New York wrongful death statute clearly states that wrongful acts or lawbreaking are potentially grounds for a wrongful death claim by surviving dependents.

If the state has successfully prosecuted the person whose criminal activity caused your loss, the evidence from that prosecution might help build your civil case against them. If they avoided conviction or pled to a lesser offense, your wrongful death lawsuit could very easily give your family a sense of justice.

Not only could you have a ruling from the civil court that shows that the other person is responsible for your family’s tragedy, but you could also have the right to compensation from them for the impact of the loss on your family. An experienced attorney can help you.