Families Have the Right to Recover for Wrongful Death in Texas
Houston attorney guides you through the legal process after you lose a loved one
Cire Law Firm’s founder, Attorney George “Buck” Cire, has guided families through the aftermath of injuries and losses since he began practicing in 1986. He understands the financial strain a death can place on you and your family and does all he can to ease the stress on you as he aggressively pursues compensation for your loss.
Texas laws governing wrongful death
Laws pertaining to wrongful death actions are contained in Chapter 71 of Texas’s Civil Practice and Remedy Code. The wrongful death cause of action is based on the underlying personal injury claim, meaning you must prove all elements of the personal injury claim and that the injury caused your loved one’s death. For example, if your family member died because of a hospital’s negligence, you must prove each element of the medical malpractice claim — that the healthcare provider breached a duty of care and your loved one was fatally injured as a result.
Who brings a wrongful death claim
The spouse, children or parents of your family member can bring a wrongful death action for the benefit of all beneficiaries eligible for compensation. If none of these family members initiate a wrongful death claim within three months, the executor or administrator may file a claim, unless the spouse, children and parents all request that the wrongful death action not be filed.
Damages for wrongful death
The damages you may recover depend on the specific facts of your case, but may include:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Medical bills related to your loved one’s fatal injuries
- Income your loved one would have earned
- Benefits you would have received, such as healthcare and Social Security
- Loss of household services, including childcare, accounting, cooking, lawn maintenance, cleaning, home maintenance and security
- Loss of love, companionship, guidance, advice, care and protection
- Emotional distress over the loss
- Exemplary damages, if the defendants were grossly negligent or acted willfully
Survival of actions after death
If your loved one filed a personal injury claim and later died, the action survives the death. The lawsuit continues as though the plaintiff is still alive, and damages are recoverable by the heirs of the estate.
Death of the defendant also does not preclude a personal injury or wrongful death claim. For purposes of continuing the suit, the estate’s administrator or executor is made the defendant.
Seek justice in Houston if your loved one was killed because of another’s negligence
You have the right to compensation if your loved one was killed because of negligence. Call Cire Law Firm at 713.532.6206 or contact us online 24 hours a day, seven days a week to schedule a free initial case review. Our Houston office represents families of fatally injured victims throughout Harris and Montgomery counties. We take your wrongful death case on contingency.