What is the wrongful death lawsuit procedure from the moment I hire you to the moment we have a successful recovery?
The process for bringing and furthering your wrongful death case depends on the incident that caused the wrongful death.
For example, in an automobile accident, we will get the police report. The police report will identify the negligent driver and his or her insurance company.
When you file your claim against an insurance company for a wrongful death liability, that insurance company will determine whether or not there is coverage for the particular act of the insured driver and whether the person who caused the death of the victim was indeed negligent.
If the insurance company does not pay a claim or refuses to pay a certain amount of the claim, then it is up to the client to determine whether or not they want to file a lawsuit.
In the course of a wrongful death lawsuit, your wrongful death attorney will focus on two things: liability and damages. In doing so your lawyer will conduct the following steps in order to prove that the other driver was at fault:
- Conduct discovery
- Depose the other driver
- Depose witnesses to the accident
- Seek the testimony of expert witnesses (when necessary)
In a wrongful death lawsuit, is it possible for the personal representative and surviving heirs to have the same wrongful death lawyer?
Yes, because they are both proving liability, and they are seeking different types of damages.
There is not usually a conflict of interest between the parties, but I would advise the wrongful death lawyer to get their consent and waiver of any potential conflict.
What is the statute of limitations for a wrongful death suit?
Generally, the safest thing to do is to file within two years of the wrongful act because there is a two-year statute of limitations in Nevada on wrongful death claims.
Does the statute of limitations vary based on whether the defendant is a governmental entity?
Yes, if it is against the federal government, you have to file a tort claim within 6 months of the act. If it is against the state government, you have to file within 2 years. It is always safest to see an attorney as soon as possible to see what your rights are.