Wrongful Death

Wrongful Death Attorney in Kansas City, MO

It can be painful to come to terms with the untimely death of a loved one, especially if they died from another person’s negligence. It may be hard to face the practical consequences as you struggle to come to terms with the loss and cope with the grief. After the death of your family member may come financial problems that come with the loss of their income, the hospital bills, or the funeral costs. However, handling these may be the last thing on your mind. Our Kansas City wrongful death attorney at Ricket Law Firm can help! We deal with the legal issues regarding your loss to help ease the stressful situation. 

Call one of our experienced Kansas attorneys if you’ve lost a loved one to another party’s carelessness. Our Kansas City, MO, wrongful death attorney can help you pursue compensation so you can grieve without suffering the consequences. Let us help you!

Why do I need a Wrongful Death Attorney in Kansas City, MO?

Ashley Ricket has years of experience handling nursing home abuse and medical malpractice. These cases often involve nursing homes or healthcare companies that fail to do their duty, resulting in the untimely death of the elderly. 

Ashley Ricket’s practice focuses on personal injury litigation, representing plaintiffs in nursing home abuse and neglect, medical malpractice, daycare abuse, and insurance bad faith. She has litigated cases in state and federal courts in Missouri, Illinois, and Kansas; the Federal Court of Claims in Washington, D.C.; the Supreme Court of Missouri; and the Missouri Court of Appeals for the Western District of Missouri. Ashley went to trial in an elder abuse case in California for ten weeks in 2013 with co­-counsel Lesley Clement.

Here are more reasons why you should hire our Kansas City, MO, wrongful death lawyer:

  • Experience makes the difference: Familiarity with the state and federal laws can speed up the progress of your case. Time is of utmost importance since the longer a case goes on, the later you will receive your financial compensation. 
  • Policy change is the goal: We want to prevent more wrongful death cases. To put the entities at fault to justice, they often implement long-term policies that prevent such tragedies from happening again. 
  • Multiple awards and recognitions: Ashley was chosen in 2012 to receive the Rising Star Award at the Women’s Justice Awards. Missouri judges and her peers selected Ashley. Ashley was nominated to the National Trial Lawyers Association’s Top 40 Under 40 list from 2012 to 2015 and was honored by Missouri Lawyers Weekly as one of Missouri’s “Up & Coming” attorneys in 2012. Ashley was also recognized as one of Kansas City Business Journal’s Best of the Bar from 2013 to 2016 and a Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyer from 2012 to 2016.

Our wrongful death lawyer has helped many grieving families whose elderly loved ones have suffered from neglectful nursing homes. We’ll ensure you receive the compensation you deserve and get justice for your loved one’s death. Get in touch today to find out how we can help you.

What is Wrongful Death?

Wrongful death is when a person is killed because of another’s misconduct. The party at fault may be a person or an entity. Many circumstances can lead to a wrongful death lawsuit, such as criminal acts, manufacturing defects, toxic torts, car accidents, or medical malpractice. Daycare abuse and home health abuse can also result in wrongful death.

Don’t exacerbate your suffering by waiting too long. If your loved one passed away from another’s negligence, contact us. Our Kansas City wrongful death lawyer is here for you. 

Kansas City wrongful death attorney

What's the Difference Between a Criminal Homicide Case and a Wrongful Death Claim?

A person can face criminal charges for homicide and be sued for wrongful death at the same time. However, these two are not the same. Wrongful death lawsuits fall under the area of personal injury. This means that the merits of the case and the basis of the defendant’s liability is financial compensation, often called “damages.” On the other hand, a conviction in a criminal homicide case involves penalties such as probation, fines, imprisonment, or jail time, among others. 

One other crucial difference is the legal standard to prove the case. It is more difficult to establish guilt in a criminal case than to claim compensation from a civil one. A civil lawsuit only requires that the defendant is proven liable “by a preponderance of the evidence.” In non-legalese terms, establishing a wrongful death case means you only have to show that it is more likely than not that the defendant caused the death. For a criminal case, the government must establish the guilt of the accused “beyond a reasonable doubt.” This is a high standard for the prosecution to meet, making it more difficult.

If you want to bring justice for the sake of your deceased loved one, message us. We can help you recover compensation and push for changes that prevent other unfortunate events. Contact Ricket Law Firm today to schedule a consultation with our skilled wrongful death attorney.

How Do I Prove a Wrongful Death Claim in Kansas City, MO?

If you want to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit, consider these four elements you need to win your case. These four are:

Duty of Care

You need to prove that the other party should keep your loved one safe or not cause them harm.

Example: Mr. X placed his mother, Mrs. Y, in a nursing home. The nursing home and the staff are required to care for Ms. Y properly.

Breach of Duty

Once you’ve established a duty of care, you must show that the defendant’s actions violated the duty they owed your loved one. 

Example 1: The nursing home was severely understaffed, meaning that there were nights when no one checked in on Mrs. Y, who was bedridden. In this case, the nursing home may have breached its duty.

Causation: The next thing you should prove is that the breach of duty caused harm to the decedent. 

Example 2: Mrs. Y was neglected for weeks while bedridden, causing painful sores and leading to an excruciating death. If you can show the relation between the two in court, that would be enough to prove causation. 

Damages

Finally, you need to have enough evidence to show the events that unfolded caused damage. 

ExampleIn our hypothetical example, Mr. X failed to show that Mrs. Y’s death caused substantial damage sufficiently. Since that’s the case, he failed to recover any significant compensation.

It’s essential to prove these elements to win your wrongful death lawsuit. Suppose the court is unconvinced that the defendant has an obligation to your loved one, that they did not fulfill their duty, that their actions caused harm to your relative, or that the incident harmed you. In that case, you may not be able to get compensation. This is why hiring our skilled Kansas City wrongful death attorney from Ricket Law Firm is essential. Call today to discuss your case!

Who Can File Wrongful Death Action in KCMO?

Missouri law specifies three classes of people who can bring a wrongful death action to the court. The first class includes the decedent’s surviving spouse, their children, or the descendants of those children if the deceased’s children are dead. 

If no one from the first class is alive, then people categorized under the second class may file for wrongful death. People in this class include their surviving siblings or the descendants of those siblings. If there is no one from the second class who can file a wrongful death action, then the court appoints a plaintiff ad litem. The plaintiff ad litem is a court-appointed person who handles the case for an interested person who can benefit from such action.  

If you’re unsure if you can file wrongful death, it’s best to ask our experienced Kansas City, MO, wrongful death attorney. Contact us today to discuss the details of your case!

Who May Be Sued for a Wrongful Death?

Lawsuits for wrongful death may be filed against various people, businesses, organizations, authorities, and employees. In the case of an automobile accident involving a drunk driver, a badly-built road, and a faulty vehicle, for instance, a wrongful death claim might name the following defendants:

  • The driver
  • The people who sold or gave alcohol to the driver
  • The property owner of the place that served the alcohol
  • The manufacturer of the vehicle or the parts that were used
  • The builder of the road
  • The government employee who did not provide a warning of the accident

Take note that you cannot sue all people for wrongful death. Some laws provide immunity to certain people and agencies. For instance, recent federal statutes grant defendants in train incidents and some product liability lawsuits involving medical devices protection from wrongful death claims.

It is possible to claim compensation from many people for a wrongful death case. It can be too complicated to handle at times. Hence, you need to hire our experienced wrongful death attorney from Kansas City, MO. Call our law office today to schedule a consultation. 

What Compensation Can The Family of a Wrongful Death in KCMO Receive?

You can be awarded compensatory damages if you’ve successfully proven your wrongful death claim. Wrongful death damages are a combination of the calculable economic damages and the more subjective noneconomic damages. 

Punitive or exemplary damages may also be awarded in wrongful death situations. 

Juries typically give punitive damages to penalize defendants for more severe types of wrongdoing, such as driving under the influence.

Some examples of economic damages include:

  • Loss of future income and inheritance
  • Medical bills before your loved one passed away
  • Funeral expenses

Noneconomic damages may cover:

  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of consortium
  • Loss of guidance
  • Pain and suffering

Most wrongful death claims do not have a limitation on damages under Missouri Law. One exception involves claims for medical malpractice, which have a cap of $350,000.

The loss of a loved one can be painful. While money certainly can’t replace a person, recovering compensation for their loss will make things easier for you. Contact our wrongful death attorney in Kansas City, MO, to discuss your case.

What is the Statute of Limitations for Wrongful Death Claims in Missouri?

You must file a wrongful death case no more than two years from the date of death. However, there is an exception that involves the “discovery rule.”

According to the discovery rule, which is accepted by most states, the statute of limitations starts when you learn the true cause of a person’s death. When the cause of death is not immediately apparent but becomes clear after further examination, the discovery rule is applicable.

The longer you wait, the less your window is to recover compensation. Reach out to our esteemed wrongful death attorney in our Kansas City law firm today.

Call our Wrongful Death Attorney in Kansas City, MO, Now!

The passing of a loved one can be a difficult time. While you deal with the grief, you also have to face funeral costs, and potential medical bills, among others. While filing a lawsuit won’t bring back your loved one, we can make it easier. At Ricket Law Firm, we care about ensuring that those tasked to care for your loved ones are held responsible for their negligence. 

Ashley Ricket has been handling nursing home and medical malpractice cases since early in her career. With decades of experience in her niche area, she knows how to get to the heart of the matter to reach the best resolution at the earliest possible. Her efforts usually result in long-term policy changes, preventing further harm to residents. 

If your loved one was neglected and passed away as a consequence, contact us. We can help you recover compensation and make it so that the same tragedy does not happen again.

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