The death of a loved one is always tragic, and when that death is unexpected, the emotional burden is even greater. Although it can be an extremely uncomfortable step, making sure that your family is financially stable after your loved one’s wrongful death is an important issue to consider.
Medical treatment, funeral costs, lost future income, and other expenses can add to your burden. With the help of an experienced attorney, you and your family can recover the compensation you need to be made financially whole again. In addition, a wrongful death lawsuit can hold the at-fault party accountable for their actions.
At Scholle Law, our attorneys are personally familiar with the pain of losing a loved one. We understand what you are going through, and our team is here to help. For over 25 years, our compassionate lawyers have successfully represented families of wrongful death victims, recovering millions on their behalf.
Call us at (866) 592-1296 or contact us online today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with a wrongful death lawyer in Watkinsville.
Is Wrongful Death a Criminal Matter?
“Wrongful death” is often used interchangeably with terms like “homicide.” However, these are not the same thing in the legal world:
Wrongful death cases refer to civil claims that one person brings against another party on behalf of a person who has died. In a wrongful death case, the defendant could be a person, a business entity, or a government entity.
Homicide is defined as the unlawful killing of a human being by another. This is a criminal act.
Criminal death is governed by a state’s criminal code.
Title 16 of the O.C.G.A. contains Georgia’s criminal code, which encompasses cases such as murder and manslaughter. The state prosecutes homicide cases, while personal injury attorneys like Charles Scholle litigate wrongful death cases.
Criminal homicide cases and civil wrongful death cases generally have different aims. In a criminal death case, the court aims to punish the wrongdoer for their actions. In a wrongful death case, the aim is to compensate the victim’s family for their loss.
There are several other important differences between criminal death and wrongful death in the state of Georgia:
A district attorney’s office will not pursue a wrongful death claim (it is not under their legal purview).
You can pursue a wrongful death case even if the district attorney’s office pursues a criminal action for homicide. You can file a civil case whether or not the defendant is found guilty of criminal charges. A famous example of this is the OJ Simpson trial, in which Simpson was found not guilty of murder but was found liable for wrongful death in civil court.
There will be no “guilty” or “not guilty” verdict in a wrongful death suit. Instead, it will determine that the defendant is “liable” or “not liable.”
Wrongful death cases cannot result in jail time or imprisonment for a defendant. Rather, monetary damages may be awarded if the responsible party is found at-fault for the death.
While these differences are important to note, it is more important to understand that filing a wrongful death suit is the best way to seek compensation after your loved one’s passing. Your attorney can provide more insight and advice regarding your options and the process of filing a lawsuit.
Contact a Watkinsville Wrongful Death Attorney Today
Suffering the death of a loved one because of someone else’s actions or negligence is one of the most difficult moments in life. You do not have to face this time alone. At Scholle Law, our attorneys are personally familiar with the pain of losing a loved one. We understand what you are going through, and our team is here to help. For over 25 years, our compassionate lawyers have successfully represented families of wrongful death victims, recovering millions on their behalf.
Call us at (866) 592-1296 or contact us online today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with a Watkinsville wrongful death lawyer.