It’s never easy to lose a loved one, and the complicated legal problems underlying wrongful death claims can make the grieving worse. The amount of time you must file a lawsuit in Brooklyn, New York for wrongful death claims is governed by the statute of limitations. It is essential to comprehend these legal limits if you want to seek justice and get paid for your damages.
What is the Wrongful Death Statute of Limitations?
The legal window of opportunity within which a lawsuit must be filed following an injury is known as the statute of limitations. Two years from the date of death is the standard statute of limitations for wrongful death in New York. This implies that you have two years to file a lawsuit against the party or parties accountable for the demise of your loved one.
Exceptions to the Statute of Limitations
In Brooklyn, the two-year statute of limitations is exempt in the following cases:
- Discovery rule: In cases where the cause of death is not immediately evident, this rule comes into play. The statute of limitations does not begin to run until the cause of death is identified or should have been identified under reasonable circumstances.
- Fraudulent concealment: The statute of limitations is tolled (paused) until the deception is uncovered if the defendant conceals the cause of death fraudulently.
- Minority or legal disability: The statute of limitations is tolled until the dead reaches the age of majority or regains legal capacity if they were a minor or had a legal handicap (such as mental impairment).
Consequences of Missing the Deadline
You may not be able to pursue your claim in court if you file a wrongful death lawsuit after the deadline. This implies that you will give up any claims for damages, including pain and suffering, missed wages, and burial costs.
Why is the Statute of Limitations Important?
Even if you think one of the exceptions applies, the two-year statute of limitations is a hard deadline, and there’s no assurance a judge will grant an extension. Because of this, it’s imperative that you take prompt action and see a lawyer as soon as your loved one passes away.
The statute of limitations fulfills several crucial functions:
- Preserving evidence: It can be challenging to prove a wrongful death case when evidence is lost or destroyed over time. The Act promotes prompt action to guarantee the preservation of evidence.
- Safeguarding defendants: Defendants are entitled to a fair trial, which requires time to compile evidence and build a case. It may be challenging for them to adequately defend themselves if lawsuits are permitted to be filed years after the death.
- Encouraging finality: By establishing a precise timetable for settling disputes, the act aids in bringing legal proceedings to a close.
- Discovery and investigation: It takes time to investigate the death’s circumstances and collect relevant evidence. Your lawyer can perform a comprehensive investigation and develop a compelling case if you get started early.
- Legal proceedings preparation: Serious legal matters necessitate extensive planning. By moving quickly, you give your lawyer enough time to get ready for any court cases and make sure your case is handled well.
How to Proceed with a Wrongful Death Claim
As soon as you believe that a loved one was the victim of wrongful death, it’s imperative to speak with an experienced wrongful death attorney. They can help you understand your legal rights, work through the statute of limitations, and put together a strong case for damages.
Seek Legal Guidance:
It can be difficult to navigate the complexity of a wrongful death case while you’re grieving and experiencing emotional upheaval. A knowledgeable Brooklyn wrongful death lawyer can offer crucial direction, encouragement, and defense during the court proceedings. They can guide you through the legal complexity, assist you understand your alternatives, and make sure you get the amount you are entitled to.
Find out how long you must file a lawsuit, whether there are any exceptions to the rule, what happens if you miss the deadline, and what to do if you think you have a claim. In cases involving wrongful death, time is of the importance in wrongful death proceedings. Don’t put off getting legal counsel. Speak with a knowledgeable Brooklyn lawyer right now to go over your case and your choices. Call now for a free consultation (718) 414-6642.