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In Maryland, who is eligible to file a wrongful death claim?

wrongful death woman sad on couch

The death of a loved one is always emotionally overwhelming and heartbreaking. However, when their death could have been otherwise prevented if a person or entity had acted differently, it is completely intolerable. No one should lose their life due to the wrongful actions of another. If you have lost a loved one due to the unfathomable wrongful acts of a person or entity, contact one of our trusted and compassionate Prince George’s County Wrongful Death Attorneys who can help you seek justice for your loved one that was taken away in an unimaginable way.

How does Maryland define “wrongful death?”

In Maryland, a wrongful death occurs when a death is caused by an accidental or intentional felonious wrongful act that could have otherwise been prevented if the at-fault party had acted differently. A wrongful death claim can be filed on behalf of a decedent because if they had survived the illness or injury that killed them, they would have been able to pursue a personal injury lawsuit for their damages. Typically, wrongful death claims are pursued when a decedent’s death was a result of a negligent incident, an intentional act, or medical malpractice.

Who can file this type of claim?

In most states, the only eligible party who can file a wrongful death claim on behalf of a decedent is a personal representative (executor). However in Maryland, the only eligible parties are:

  • The decedent’s spouse
  • The decedent’s parents
  • The decedent’s children

If the decedent did not leave any of the above eligible parties, any blood or by marriage relative who significantly depended on the decedent financially can bring a wrongful death claim on the decedent’s behalf.

How long do I have to file a claim?

According to Maryland’s statute of limitations, eligible parties have three years from the date of the individual’s death to file a wrongful death claim. If they fail to file a claim within this period they will lose their chance of recovering financial compensation on behalf of the decedent. However, there are exceptions to this statute. In Maryland, if an individual’s cause of death was the result of an occupational disease, meaning they died from exposure to toxic substances in their workplace, the statute of limitations is different. If this is the case, eligible parties have ten years from the date of the person’s death or three years from the date the occupational disease was discovered as the cause of the decedent’s death. It is critical for eligible parties to meet these strict deadlines in order to recover monetary compensation for their loved ones’ damages.

In the unfortunate event that you have lost someone due to the unacceptable wrongful actions of another, please don’t hesitate to contact our determined and skilled attorneys. Our team is prepared to help you seek justice on behalf of your deceased loved one.

 

 

 

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