Coming To Terms With The Untimely Death Of A Loved One And How A Workers Compensation Lawyer Can Help
Any workers compensation lawyer will tell you that one of the most harrowing types of cases that they have to deal with is the sudden and untimely death of a person because of a work related accident. It can bring unimaginable trauma to the family of the victim concerned as they try to come to terms with what has happened. In instances such as these, contacting an attorney probably wouldn’t be the first thing that the family would think to do. However, in many cases time is of the essence and that is exactly what they should do.
There are on average around 4,500 work related deaths every year in the US and they happen for a number of reasons such as poor safety measures, economic factors such as ‘corner cutting’ and general horseplay. However, ultimately a person or persons are going to be responsible and that means that they can be held accountable for their actions. Whether the company failed to have the right safety checking procedures in place, or they failed to provide correct safety gear when employees were handling dangerous equipment or substances, or they simply didn’t enforce health and safety measures, the buck stops with someone. This being the case it is up to a skilled Los Angeles workers compensation attorney to see that the right person is held liable for their actions or indeed, inactions.
So how can a workers compensation lawyer Los Angeles help?
The right attorney can help in many ways. They will be able to take the pressure off the family of the victim so that they can begin to come to terms with what’s happened. The right attorney will look to seek maximum compensation for the family, and they will make sure that the person/persons who are deemed negligent are held accountable. An experienced team of workers compensation attorneys will have the financial backing behind then to be able to call upon a wide variety of independent experts to investigate the events leading up to the accident, and to look into the ‘why’s and wherefores’ of the incident. From their findings, the representing attorney can then look to build a water tight case. Independent experts can include (but are not restricted to) safety and health experts, accident re-constructionists, machinery safety specialists and forensic scientists.
Quite often a company who has a work place related death on their hands will look to try to cover up the evidence. For example if a serious health and safety issue caused the wrongful death, they will look to rectify the problem pretty quickly (sometimes before any sort of investigation can begin). When this happens that attorney is relying on witness statements rather than hard evidence. For this reason it is vital that a lawyer be contacted at the soonest available moment.
So what can they claim for?
Wrongful death is different from any other type of claim in that usually compensation would be based around immediate and ongoing medical expenses, any ongoing rehabilitation costs and recompense for any loss of wages whilst in recovery. Obviously with a wrongful death case, the victim is no longer with us, so the focus of the compensation changes from the needs of the victim, to the needs of the family. This being the case, a team of workers comp lawyers will be seeking compensation for things like funeral and burial expenses, financial burden caused to the family by the loss of life, loss of future wages, loss of companionship, stress and trauma caused to the family and any lost inheritance. As you can see, compensation for wrongful death can easily run into millions of dollars. In addition to this, in some cases it is possible to file for punitive damages that are claimed directly against the negligent party.
In many instances when a grieving family choose an experienced, and highly skilled workers compensation lawyer to take on their case, they often feel that a huge weight has been lifted off their shoulders. They feel that someone is on their side, fighting their corner in order to deliver maximum compensation. The right lawyer will act with compassion towards the family, whilst at the same time aggressively pursuing the case to ensure that justice is served. This is why in many cases a lawyer becomes more than just an attorney, they can also become a close friend and ally and when a family is in grief, your friends are the ones that get you through.