Posts filed under wrongful death

Wrongful Death in Medical Malpractice Cases

Medical professionals, such as doctors and surgeons, will at some point hold the lives of their patient’s in their hands.  Their decisions and actions could have a direct impact of the patient and determine whether that patient lives or dies.  Since this is the case, medical professionals are held to a higher standard of care than other types of professionals due to the superior knowledge and experience that they should have acquired prior to this crucial moment.  When medical professionals are careless or have committed wrongdoings, this could lead to the patient’s death. 

Wrongful Death Actions in New York Related to Medical Malpractice

In New York, the representative(s) of a decedent’s estate may bring a lawsuit against the medical professional or the facility they allege is responsible for the decedent’s death.  In most cases, these actions are brought by close relatives of the deceased person, such as a spouse, child, or parent.  This is provided for under New York Estates, Powers, and Trusts Law Section 5-4.1.  To learn more about who can bring a wrongful death action in New York on behalf of the decedent, click on this link and learn more from article written by our experienced wrongful death attorneys.

In wrongful death lawsuits in New York, a family could be entitled to financial compensation for the loss of income and support.  However, they may not be entitled to emotional damages.  Compensation can include awards for lost earnings, loss of potential earnings, medical and funeral costs, and the pain and suffering of the decedent prior to death.  There may also be compensation to the family for the contributions the decedent made to the family.  This can include household work, caring for children, mowing the lawn, shopping, and cooking.

When an individual is caused to pass away due to the negligence of another, the lawsuit must be brought within two years from the date of death.  This is called the statute of limitations, and any claim brought outside those two years will be barred forever.

Civil Actions

 When an estate representative brings a wrongful death action they are bringing a civil action.  In a civil action the penalties are generally monetary, in the form of financial compensation to the plaintiff.  The standard of proof in a civil action is a preponderance (or majority) of the evidence.  In a malpractice related wrongful death action, a defendant could be found liable if the judge and/or jury finds that it is more likely than not that the defendant was responsible for the death of the decedent.

Under New York law, the statute of limitations for medical malpractice is two and a half years from the act or omission complained of therein to be the wrongdoing.

The attorneys at Greenberg and Greenberg handle medical malpractice and wrongful death cases throughout New York State, including Columbia, Greene, Rensselaer, and Albany County.  Our legal team has earned a reputation for dedicated service to our clients injured in New York personal injury accidents.  Please contact us today to receive a free case evaluation by dialing locally to 518-828-3336 or call toll free at 877-469-9300.