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What constitutes a wrongful death under Texas law?

On Behalf of | Mar 27, 2023 | Personal Injury |

Texas has many laws on its books that prohibit causing harm to individuals. Many of these laws are criminal statutes, and a violation of such laws might lead to someone’s prosecution. However, there are plenty of scenarios that might not put someone in jail but could still cause severe harm to others. As such, Texas also has civil codes that allow those affected by someone else’s poor choices to take them to civil court in order to seek financial compensation.

Personal injury lawsuits involve someone who has been harmed by another party and is seeking compensation from that party for the losses that stem from the harm in question. Sometimes, the person most directly affected can no longer take action, as the incident may have cost them their life. In such scenarios, surviving family members may have grounds to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit.

Failures and misconduct can lead to claims

The Texas wrongful death statute actually includes a relatively robust definition of the types of actions that would lead to a lawsuit. Misconduct or regulatory rule-breaking is one reason to pursue a claim. Neglect is another. Unskillfulness, carelessness and defaults are also grounds for wrongful death claims in Texas.

The law specifically allows for a claim based on an individual’s actions or the actions of others acting on their behalf. People could potentially pursue a claim against an employer if someone causes a death while working. In addition to having some kind of provable misconduct or negligence involved, wrongful death claims also require some kind of provable economic impact.

Provided that someone can prove another party did something inappropriate and there were financial consequences, they may have grounds to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit under Texas law that can lead to financial compensation.

Wrongful death claims create consequences for misconduct

Especially if the state did not prosecute the person or business that caused someone’s death, surviving family members may feel as though they did not receive justice. A wrongful death lawsuit can lead to financial justice by forcing one party to compensate the surviving dependent family members for the financial impact of losing a loved one. Additionally, many people find closure in a court order acknowledging that another party was responsible for the death of their family member.

Understanding the approach that Texas takes in regard to wrongful death claims is necessary for families that are hoping to pursue justice in civil court after losing a loved one due to another’s actions or inactions. Speaking with an experienced legal professional can provide surviving loved ones with that clarity.