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Learn About Wrongful Death Claims in Wyoming

No matter where in the U.S. you live, you can file a wrongful death claim. Wyoming is no exception, but the state does have some laws that can impact your claim. Find out everything you should know about filing wrongful death claims in Wyoming.

What is a Wrongful Death Claim?

Whether you live in Wyoming or somewhere else, the basic definition of a wrongful death claim is similar. It is a type of civil lawsuit that requests compensation for a fatality that involved another party’s recklessness or negligent behavior.

A wrongful death claim can be against a company or an individual. It’s similar to a personal injury claim. However, the injured individual cannot represent themselves in court. Because the individual is deceased, another person must file the claim. In some situations, family members can get compensation for the death of their loved one.

In Wyoming, there are some very specific requirements for a claim. Here are a few things you should know about wrongful death claims in Wyoming:

1. You can file a claim even if the case is in criminal court

Sometimes, the recklessness or negligence of another individual or company results in a criminal case. When this occurs, you can still file a wrongful death claim. The state files the criminal case, but the survivors of the deceased must file the wrongful death claim.

Another difference between the two types of cases is the consequences. In a criminal case, the offender could receive prison time and other harsh penalties. However, a wrongful death claim can only result in payment for damages.

2. Representatives of the estate must file the claim

In Wyoming, a representative of the affected individual’s estate must file the wrongful death claim. If any immediate family is alive, they can’t use the money from the claim to pay estate debts.

The immediate family or other dependents can’t file a claim. However, they can participate in the case and request compensation. They can ask for compensation for all of the following:

  • Loss of companionship
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of comfort
  • Loss of care
  • Reduced income (the lost wages of the deceased)
  • Funeral costs
  • Medical bills

3. You only have two years to file

Wrongful death law in Wyoming places a statute of limitations on claims. If you want to file a claim, you need to do so within two years of the death. It is likely that a court will refuse to hear your case after two years. You should speak to a wrongful death attorney in Wyoming as soon as you realize you have a claim.

4. Wyoming has a comparative fault rule

In Wyoming, you can file a wrongful death claim against someone even if the deceased was at fault. However, you can’t file a claim if the deceased was more than 50% at fault.

The court evaluates the incident and assigns fault to the offender and the deceased. Then, that number affects the compensation. For example, a judge might decide that a wrongful death claim merits $10,000 in compensation. If the deceased was 25% at fault for the incident, the damages will only be $75,000.

Filing Wrongful Death Claims in Wyoming

If you think you have a wrongful death claim, you might have some questions. There are some very specific laws regarding wrongful death. Stand your ground laws and other circumstances can affect the outcome of your claim.

To find out whether or not you have a case, you should speak to a Wyoming wrongful death lawyer.

This article does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editors or management of EconoTimes

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