Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Birth Injury Attorneys You Can Trust
The death of a child is a heartbreaking experience for parents under any circumstances. But if your child died due to mistakes made by medical professionals, the mixture of emotions can be overwhelming - anger, confusion, sadness and frustration.
We can help you at the Tyrone Law Firm, PC. Our experienced Atlanta legal team has years of experience handling such complicated birth injury cases. We can explain all the legal options available for families so you can decide which one is the best one for you.
In most cases, the best solution is to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the doctor or hospital responsible for your child's death. But it's important to understand that this approach often requires a tremendous amount of work. That's why it's critical that you contact us as soon as possible so we can start working on your case right away.
Georgia law provides a legal cause of action when someone has been killed by another's negligence. The legal action under Georgia law is called an action for "Wrongful Death." Negligence can include many different causes in wrongful death cases involving newborn babies or young children, including:
- Labor and delivery injuries
- Neonatal injuries
- Other birth injuries
Our law firm has been successful on behalf of families bringing wrongful death lawsuits. We have also obtained some of the largest jury verdicts in the state. Below, we have outlined a general overview of wrongful death lawsuits.
If you have more specific questions about your potential wrongful death case, we strongly urge you to schedule a free consultation with our Atlanta law firm as soon as possible. A successful wrongful death lawsuit - if handled correctly - can provide you and your family with financial security for the remainder of your life. It is hard to overstate how much is at stake
Wrongful Death Lawsuits in Georgia
Georgia law is different than the law in many other jurisdictions as it separates the entire Wrongful Death claim into several parts. The claim itself is separated into the following smaller claims:
- Claim for medical expenses prior to death.
- Claim for pain and suffering prior to death.
- Claim for the "full value of the life" from the viewpoint of the decedent.
The first two parts of the claim can only be brought by the administrator of the decedent's estate. This is one reason that the choice of an administrator of the estate is an important choice. The individual chosen as administrator, usually the parent or parents of the deceased child, actually has a "seat" at the Plaintiff's table during a trial.
It is critical that the administrator be someone who represents stability and reliability. This is because the administrator will be responsible for dispersing any money recovered from the wrongful death claim for medical expenses, or pre-death pain and suffering. Depending on the circumstances of the decedent's death, the money provided as compensation for these two categories can be significant. Therefore, the jury must view the administrator as someone they can count on to disburse the money in the way that maximizes the impact and benefit to the family left behind.
The third part of the claim is considered the claim for the "full value" of the life of the decedent. Georgia is different from many states in that the "full value" of the life is considered not from the perspective of a juror and how that juror might value life in general, or "their own" life, but particularly how the juror perceives that the decedent valued their own life and the monetary value the decedent would have put on their own life.
While it might seem obvious that each of us would value our own life to the highest dollar amount, in fact, to the law, this not the case. In fact, the message behind this particular point of view is that "each person may put a different value on life". Put another way "some of us put greater value on life than others".
How We Can Help
The lawyer must gather evidence of what the decedent valued in life. Is it family? What if there is no family? Is it activities in life? What if the person was not active? Is it the person's faith in their creator? What if the decedent was not particularly a person of faith?
This is where the lawyer's skill in putting on evidence - in fact, putting on "the story" of the decedent's value of their own life - is critical. At the Tyrone Law Firm, PC, we have developed an expertise in this process. We employ the methods of a family therapist to discover the story of the person and how they lived their life. Or if the child was a newborn baby or young child, we explain many of the activities and dreams the parents planned to fulfill with their children and cannot do so now. (In fact, we routinely use psychologists to work with us in "discovering" the decedent's story).
We then employ the methods used by screenwriters, actors and directors to determine how to best tell the story of the client's case. In fact, we routinely use screenwriters and directors to help us craft the story - the witnesses, pieces of evidence and "scenes" from the decedent's life that we will put before the jury. Our innovative approach often helps give us an edge in the courtroom.
Trial Focused, Jury Focused
We are frequently asked why we place so much emphasis on preparing for trial, when what the client would really prefer is to have their case settled without a trial. Here's why. Insurance companies, who in most cases are representing the interests of the defendants in our clients' cases, are not going to pay out any more money than they are forced to pay. If they believe they can get away with paying less to settle a case, they will.
Here is another important part: Insurance companies and corporations are going to pay different dollar amounts to different attorneys based on their fear of the attorney's skill and ability as a trial attorney. There are many attorneys out there who always settle a case for whatever dollar amount the Insurance companies offer. They never go to trial.
Knowing this, insurance companies will not pay the full value of the claim to these attorneys because they know they can get away with paying less. They are only going to pay the full value of the claim to an attorney who has an established reputation for taking cases to trial, has a history of preparing all their cases for trial, and is known for performing well in the courtroom.
This is why we place so much emphasis on preparing for trial in all our cases. By doing so, we are effectively sending a message to the corporations and insurance companies that we will not settle a claim for less than full value. And as your attorney, we will do everything in our power to ensure that you receive full compensation for your wrongful death case.
"A truly great and innovative attorney who cares about his clients."
– Solange R.