If you have recently lost a family member in any type of fatal accident caused by another party, it is natural to have many important legal questions you cannot answer on your own. An experienced Colorado wrongful death lawyer is an invaluable asset for anyone in this situation, but it is vital to know how to evaluate your local options for legal representation and find the attorney who is right for your case.
How to Evaluate Potential Wrongful Death Lawyers
Many wrongful death attorneys offer potential new clients free or low-cost initial consultations. A consultation is an opportunity to interview a prospective lawyer and determine whether they are a good fit for your case. Take time to research your local options and narrow down a list of the attorneys who appear to be the most qualified and have the greatest number of positive reviews from past clients.
Before scheduling a consultation with an attorney, you should take time to develop a list of questions that can help gauge the attorney’s suitability for your case. While it’s important to find legal counsel as soon as possible, it is equally important that you do not rush your decision to hire an attorney. A few of the key factors you should evaluate before agreeing to any attorney’s representation include:
- Experience. The attorney should be able to demonstrate a high level of professional experience with wrongful death claims. While many newer attorneys are enthusiastic and do all they can for their clients, there is no substitute for solid, proven experience handling the type of case you currently face.
- Availability. A good attorney maintains a manageable caseload, ensuring they can provide adequate attention to each case they are handling at the same time. While it’s common for attorneys to represent multiple clients at once due to the time lapses between proceedings, it’s important for the attorney to have the flexibility needed to address each of their client’s unique needs in a timely fashion.
- Responsiveness. Your chosen attorney should provide you with multiple options for contacting them so you know how you can receive updates on your case’s progress. When you ask questions during your consultation, the attorney should be able to provide detailed answers and explain the ways they can address the specific details of your claim.
During your consultation, it’s a good idea to ask more specific questions relevant to your individual case. Ask the attorney for their first impression of your claim, whether they think that you can win, how long it could take to resolve your case, and what type of case award you could receive if you win. It is also a good idea to ask if they notice any unique challenges or opportunities that stand out to them and how they plan to address them.
Ultimately, it is crucial that you choose an experienced attorney who inspires you with confidence about your legal position and their ability to provide comprehensive and compassionate representation through all the difficult proceedings ahead. The Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal has years of experience helping our clients with all types of complex civil claims for damages, and we are ready to put this experience to work in your case.
Q: What Are the Economic Damages for Wrongful Death?
A: A wrongful death suit aims to recover compensation for the victim’s family, including their economic and non-economic damages resulting from the death. Economic damages commonly cited in wrongful death suits include lost financial support, funeral and burial expenses, and increased household expenses following the death. Your Colorado wrongful death lawyer can help identify all the various damages you can include in your claim.
Q: Are Wrongful Death Settlements Taxable?
A: The proceeds you receive from a successful wrongful death claim or personal injury claim do not qualify as income; therefore, they cannot be taxed as income. You will not be required to pay taxes at the state or federal level on your wrongful death settlement. If you have specific questions about any potential tax implications of your settlement, a good attorney can refer you to a local tax professional who can address your concerns.
Q: Who Can File a Wrongful Death Suit?
A: State law allows the surviving spouse and/or heirs of the decedent to file a wrongful death claim. If the deceased had an estate plan in place at the time of their death and the plan is legally enforceable, then the personal representative they named in their estate will have the primary right to file a wrongful death suit. The plaintiff in a wrongful death claim seeks compensation on behalf of the decedent’s beneficiaries.
Q: How Long Do I Have to File a Wrongful Death Claim?
A: If you intend to file a wrongful death suit against another party, you must do so within the statute of limitations. This time limit starts on the date of the death and lasts for two years. This may sound like more than enough time, but you must remember that it can take longer than you may expect to gather the documentation needed to file your case. It’s always advisable to meet with an attorney as soon as possible to ensure you meet this deadline.
Q: What Does It Cost to Hire a Wrongful Death Lawyer?
A: The Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal offers contingency fee billing for wrongful death and personal injury cases. With a contingency agreement, the client pays nothing upfront and pays no ongoing legal fees for their representation. Instead, their attorney takes a percentage of the final case award, but there is no fee at all if the attorney is unable to secure compensation for the client.
The Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal has years of experience resolving wrongful death claims for our clients throughout the state, and we can put this experience to work for you. If you have questions about an impending wrongful death case and need legal counsel you can trust, contact us today to schedule a free consultation with a Colorado wrongful death lawyer.