Medical malpractice can cause not only serious injuries to patients, but can also result in the death of a patient who should have survived. While most people do not expect miracles from medical professionals, they do expect that medical professionals will use treat their patients at a certain standard of care. Failure to do so can result in medical malpractice. When a patient dies because of medical malpractice, surviving family members may be able to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit.
Wrongful death is a legal cause of action in New York. It allows for the surviving family members to bring an action, through the deceased’s estate, for the pecuniary loss they sustained from the loss of their loved one to medical negligence. This claim is based on an underlying civil wrong that had tragic results, not only for the decedent, but also for family members and children. It is filed on the behalf of the estate of the decedent and its heirs. The deceased person’s representative for their estate can bring a lawsuit against the person or entity that caused the death and attempt to recover for the monetary loss family members sustained.
Wrongful death cases can result from medical errors including:
- Failure to diagnose
- Failure to follow-up
- Medication mistakes
- Surgical errors
The deceased estate can recover for:
- Conscious pain and suffering that the deceased experienced due to the medical malpractice when alive, and
- For financial damages that resulted from the death, such as loss of income for the surviving family members.
By filing a New York wrongful death claim, surviving family members have the opportunity to recover for damages including funeral expenses that they incurred because of the death of their loved one. While wrongful death settlements or verdicts cannot replace a loved one it can help to relieve the financial burden the family incurred because of their unexpected loss.
If a loved one has died because of the negligence of a health care professional, you should contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible to protect your rights to compensation for your loss.
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