If I File a Wrongful Death Claim, Will I Have to Go to Court?

January 3, 2022
flowers on casket

There’s always so much to do after losing a loved one, especially if the death was totally unexpected. From notifying relatives and arranging funeral services to locating essential documents and settling the estate, loss brings with it a lengthy to-do list that can take months—or even years—to complete.

As if that weren’t challenging enough, a death in the family also prompts a lot of grief. In the days and weeks following a death caused by the negligence or recklessness of another, such grief can be so overwhelming that it’s impossible to get virtually anything done.

Put another way, you have enough to worry about in the wake of a loss without having to navigate complex legal proceedings. This is precisely why many families decide not to take action following a death that could have been prevented.

If you’re facing such a scenario, though, filing a claim could yield considerable compensation. While securing a monetary recovery obviously won’t erase what happened, it might protect your family’s financial security in the aftermath. What’s more, there’s a good chance you won’t have to appear in court to get it.

As long as the case is supported by adequate evidence, most wrongful death claims are settled. That means grieving families dont typically have to go before a judge or jury to achieve justice on behalf of the deceased.

Generally speaking, opposing parties are inclined to cooperate with each other when it comes to legitimate tort claims. Both have incentive to avoid the hassle—and added expense—of going to court.

There are still a few scenarios, however, in which the grieving family has no choice but to file a formal lawsuit. Fortunately, as long as they enlist legal help, they can focus on taking care of one another while their case proceeds in good hands.

Is My Wrongful Death Case Likely to Go to Court?

Since every claim is unique—and there are no guarantees when it comes to legal disputes—there’s no way to predict which cases will end up in court and which will be settled. There are a few elements, however, that almost always make it more challenging to arrive at a satisfactory agreement. For example, claims that involve any of the following are more likely to go to trial because of their added complexity:

  • A serious liability dispute,
  • Lost wage or other complex damages questions,
  • Cases with limited evidence, and
  • Multiple at-fault parties.

Because there’s always the chance that you’ll have to file a lawsuit to pursue the compensation your family deserves, it’s wise to seek counsel from a firm that has litigation experience. That way, if you do end up going to trial, you’ll already have an experienced advocate on your side.

Speak with a South Carolina Wrongful Death Attorney

At Hodge & Langley Law Firm, we fight tirelessly for accident victims and their surviving loved ones. If you lost a family member to someone else’s negligence, we’ll use all the resources at our disposal to help you pursue a fair payout.

Call 864-585-3873 or fill out our Contact Form to set up a free case review with a wrongful death lawyer in South Carolina. Backed by more than 50 years of experience, we have what it takes to achieve success in even the most complex of cases.

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