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How Are Wrongful Death Claims Paid Out in Texas?

Dealing with the loss of a loved one due to someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing is an emotionally challenging and legally complex situation. In Texas, families grappling with an unexpected loss may find some solace through the pursuit of wrongful death claims with the help of a McAllen personal injury attorney.

Wrongful death claims in Texas are designed to provide compensation for the families of those who have died as a result of another’s negligence. These legal actions not only offer a pathway to financial recovery but also serve as a mechanism to hold responsible parties accountable for their actions.

What Damages Can You Recover in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

In Texas, the impact of a wrongful death can be profound. By filing a lawsuit, families may recover damages that address both the immediate and long-term economic losses, as well as non-economic suffering caused by the death of a loved one.

Compensation typically includes:

  • Burial and Funeral Expenses: The lawsuit may cover the costs associated with funeral services and burial, which are often substantial.
  • Loss of Future Earnings of the Deceased: This reflects the income the deceased would have earned had they lived, which supports the family left behind.
  • Loss of Benefits: This may include retirement savings and medical insurance that the deceased would have contributed to had they survived.
  • Non-Economic Damages: These encompass the pain, suffering, and loss of companionship endured by family members as a result of the loss.

Who Is Eligible to Recover Compensation in a Wrongful Death Claim?

In Texas, only the closest relatives of the deceased may file a wrongful death lawsuit. These include the deceased person’s spouse, parents, and children, as well as the executor of their estate. Any settlements or judgments must be shared among these eligible family members.

The disbursement of the compensation in wrongful death claims can involve complex legal considerations, especially when multiple family members are involved. Texas law outlines specific rules on how settlement money is divided. Generally, the distribution must be fair and equitable, considering the degree of dependency each family member had on the deceased.

If the settlement involves minor children, the court may require that their portion of the settlement be placed in a trust until the child reaches the age of majority. In cases where an eligible family member is legally incapacitated, the compensation may also need to be managed through a trust or legal guardianship.

Lump Sum versus Structured Payouts for Wrongful Death Settlements

Compensation for wrongful death can be received either as a lump sum or through structured payouts. Each option has distinct advantages, depending on the family’s needs. For example, a lump sum payment provides a single, comprehensive payout that can help families quickly manage large expenses and financial transitions after their loss.

On the other hand, structured settlements provide regular, scheduled payments to the family members. These can provide ongoing income and financial stability over time, helping manage long-term needs and living costs. If you lost a loved one and plan on filing a lawsuit, an attorney can help you determine which option is best for your situation.

Work with a Texas Wrongful Death Attorney

Pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit can be complex. In these situations, a McAllen wrongful death attorney who specializes in these claims can provide the guidance and support that you deserve. To protect your family’s rights and financial future, contact a Texas wrongful death lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal options and plan your journey to justice.