Did you lose your loved one in an accident? Did someone else’s reckless or negligent actions cause their death? If so, you might be entitled to compensation from the at-fault party. The personal injury attorneys of OnderLaw can help you with your insurance claim or lawsuit and seek the justice you deserve.

It’s never easy losing a family member. Your entire life is disrupted, and you feel a tremendous amount of grief. You’re not only faced with emotional pain but also the burden of planning a funeral and paying for other expenses. It can lead to significant stress and possibly debt if you can’t afford these costs.

The wrongful death attorneys of OnderLaw understand the difficulties of grieving the loss of someone you love when you know the accident was entirely avoidable. The party responsible for their death should be held liable. We understand that no amount of money can change what happened, but it could relieve your economic struggles so you can afford all associated expenses.

For a free consultation with a dedicated and compassionate St. Charles wrongful death lawyer, call OnderLaw today.

Wrongful Death Cases OnderLaw Can Handle

Wrongful death is the transaction, act, occurrence, conduct, or circumstance that causes a person’s death. If your loved one had survived, someone else’s intentional or negligent actions must have been of the kind that could have resulted in a personal injury lawsuit or claim. The most common causes of wrongful death are below.

Occupational hazards – It doesn’t matter whether you sit at a desk or spend all day on your feet – you could get hurt while performing the tasks of your job. Fatalities are common in places where employees encounter hazardous conditions, such as a construction site. Common reasons fatal accidents happen at work include:

  • Slip/trip and fall
  • Electric shock
  • Defective machinery or equipment
  • Falling objects
  • Fall from heights
  • Insufficient safety gear
  • Toxic chemical exposure

Car accidents – The Missouri Department of Transportation found a 12% increase in traffic fatalities from 2019 to 2020. According to statistics, 989 people died in motor vehicle accidents in Missouri. Driver inattention and error commonly lead to deadly crashes. Other factors are:

  • Tailgating
  • Speeding
  • Disobeying traffic signals and signs
  • Failing to yield the right of way
  • Distracted driving
  • Alcohol or drug impairment

Truck accidents – Accidents involving large trucks deserve their own category because tractor-trailers can cause debilitating injuries and fatalities during a collision with small cars. In 2019, a total of 4,119 people lost their lives in truck accidents. Of those deaths, only 16% were truck occupants, and 67% were the occupants of passenger vehicles. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration sets regulations for trucking companies and truck drivers, but many violate them. The consequences can be deadly.

Product liability – Manufacturers are responsible for providing the public with safe products. They must meet quality and safety standards and use the correct labeling when warning consumers of potential dangers. Common defective products that can cause fatalities are:

  • Medications
  • Motor vehicles
  • Furniture
  • Medical devices
  • Kitchen appliances
  • Children’s toys

Medical malpractice – Patients can suffer injuries or death when their medical provider makes an error while treating them. The most common reasons fatalities from medical errors occur are:

  • Failure to sterilize medical instruments
  • Administering the incorrect amount of anesthesia
  • Inadequate pre- and post-operative care
  • Delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis
  • Prescribing the wrong medication or dosage

Premises liability – Property owners and business owners must routinely maintain their properties and promptly repair damage to avoid accidents. Wrongful death is often the result of dangerous incidents, such as:

  • Dog bites
  • Fires
  • Swimming pool accidents
  • Malfunctioning elevators and escalators
  • Slip and fall accidents
  • Collapsed staircase

Defective medical devices – Prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, surgical mesh, and hip implants are only some examples of dangerous devices that can lead to a patient’s death. Some medical devices leave the manufacturer containing a defect, making them inherently unsafe. Others expose people to toxic substances, resulting in cancer or another serious disease. The manufacturer could be held liable if your loved one died from an injury or illness caused by their defective medical device.

Nursing home abuse – It’s sad to think that some doctors, nurses, and other staff members mistreat older residents. Many elderly adults need assistance showering, dressing, and walking. They may also need daily medical care to treat dementia, physical injuries, and other conditions. Nursing home patients often don’t have the physical strength or mental awareness to defend themselves against physical, sexual, and other types of abuse. These situations can become fatal since patients are more vulnerable.

How to File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in St. Charles

Every state sets statutes of limitations for different cases. This is the timeframe you must follow if you want to file a lawsuit against someone. Missouri has a three-year statute of limitations for wrongful death cases. You would have three years from the date your loved one died to sue the at-fault party. If the deadline passes, you could lose your right to monetary compensation.

It’s important that you understand the difference between a criminal homicide case and a civil lawsuit. In criminal cases, the objective is to secure a guilty verdict, so the defendant faces penalties, such as fines or imprisonment. Civil cases, such as wrongful death lawsuits, hold the defendant financially liable, meaning the judge could order them to pay compensation for the losses you and your family suffered.

Specific relatives are allowed to pursue a wrongful death case in this order of priority:

  • Surviving spouse, parents, or children
  • Surviving descendants of the children
  • Surviving sibling or descendants
  • Plaintiff ad litem appointed by the court

The St. Charles wrongful death attorneys of OnderLaw understand how overwhelming the process of handling a lawsuit can be. Our legal team will provide the guidance and support you need to get through this tragic situation. You will be our top priority as we’re seeking the maximum available compensation so you can move forward with your life.

Compensation You Can Pursue in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

You and your family might be entitled to compensation if your loved one died in a car crash, because of medical malpractice, or in another type of accident. The financial award you receive will depend on various factors, including the total costs resulting from your relative’s fatal injury and the value of intangible losses, such as emotional suffering.

When you file a lawsuit, you can pursue compensation for:

  • Pain and suffering the deceased endured before their death
  • Funeral and burial costs
  • The estimated value of lost comfort, services, guidance, consortium, companionship, support, and counsel the deceased provided
  • Medical bills associated with the fatal illness or injury
  • Pain and suffering the deceased experienced
  • Loss of wages and benefits the deceased would have earned if they were still alive

Missouri doesn’t place limitations on compensation for intangible losses in most wrongful death cases. However, if your family member died from medical malpractice, you would be prohibited from receiving a financial award of more than $700,000.

Let OnderLaw Advocate for Your Rights

Our St. Charles wrongful death attorneys have been representing accident victims and their families since 2002. We’ve been able to recover more than $3.5 billion in settlements and jury verdicts. When you hire us, you’ll receive the personalized attention and services you deserve. We will not rest until we reach a favorable outcome in your case.

You might think you can handle your case alone, but you’ll likely lose. Studies have shown that there’s a greater chance of receiving higher compensation with the help of a lawyer. Our legal team has the resources to investigate wrongful death cases and locate crucial evidence that proves who was at fault. We will tirelessly work to resolve your lawsuit so you can move forward with your life.

OnderLaw has received recognition from multiple prestigious organizations, including Super Lawyers, the National Trial Lawyers, the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, and the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum. We have also been featured in local publications, such as the St. Louis Business Journal and Missouri Lawyers Weekly. We’re proud of the reputation we’ve built and continue to strive to provide unmatched legal services for accident victims in St. Charles.

Contact a St. Charles Wrongful Death Attorney

The St. Charles wrongful death attorneys of OnderLaw are ready to fight for justice and hold the negligent party accountable for the death of your loved one. We will remain in your corner and put our skills and experience to work to secure the compensation you need.

Our legal team is available 24/7 to answer your call, address your concerns, and provide a status update on your case. You can reach us whenever you need us, day or night. We’re happy to walk you through the entire process step by step so you understand your rights and know what to expect.

If you lost your family member to a fatal injury or accident due to the negligent misconduct of another party, do not hesitate to contact OnderLaw to discuss your legal options. We can meet with you for a free consultation to discuss the details of your case and determine if we can represent you. Call us today or fill out our online form.