No one ever wants to think about losing someone they love in a wrongful death, but if you or someone you know is facing such a tragedy, an important question is how long does a wrongful death lawsuit in Florida take?
It can be overwhelming and complicated to try and figure out the state laws that apply and how long a lawsuit may actually take. Knowing what to expect can help ease anxiety surrounding this already difficult situation—that’s why we have compiled key information into this blog post so you have all the resources you need as you prepare for a potential litigation process.
The Cliff Notes: Key Takeaways From This Post
- Factors that can affect the length of a lawsuit include complexity of the case, available evidence, court scheduling and potential settlement negotiations.
- There are several stages to a wrongful death lawsuit including pre-litigation investigation/negotiation, filing of complaint, discovery, motion practice and potentially going to trial.
- It is critical to work closely with an experienced attorney who can guide through the legal process.
- Evidence gathering and preservation is key for building a strong case.
- The outcome of the lawsuit may have long-term impacts on plaintiff’s financial security and therefore important conversations should take place with an experienced lawyer.
- If considering filing a wrongful death lawsuit in Florida, get in touch with Herman & Wells for compassionate legal support.
It’s crucial to have compassionate and experienced legal representation while pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit. At Herman & Wells, our experienced wrongful death attorneys can help guide you through these complicated matters and build a case on your behalf. We are dedicated to providing compassionate, knowledgeable legal support and helping Florida families get justice. Get in touch today to learn more about how we can help you.
Factors That Affect The Length Of A Wrongful Death Lawsuit In Florida
Florida wrongful death lawsuits can take anywhere from months to years depending on the individual circumstances of the case. Factors that can affect the timeframe of a lawsuit include:
Complexity Of The Case
When the facts of a wrongful death case are complex, it can take longer to establish who is at fault. Florida wrongful death attorneys may need to investigate additional details and review more extensive evidence before they are in a position to file a lawsuit against any party responsible for the wrongful death.
Availability Of Evidence
In Florida, wrongful death attorneys must present evidence to prove the deceased person’s case. The availability of vital evidence can affect how long it takes to complete a wrongful death case. It may be necessary to subpoena documents or contact witnesses in order to gather the evidence needed for a successful claim.
Court Scheduling And Backlog
The Florida court system has a backlog of cases due to the sheer number of cases filed each year. This can affect the amount of time it takes for wrongful death lawsuits to be heard in court, as there are only so many available days on the court’s calendar.
If the defendant and plaintiff are able to come to a settlement agreement without going to court, this can speed up the process dramatically. An experienced attorney with real trial experience may be able to reach an out-of-court settlement that meets the needs of both parties in a fraction of the time it would take for a court case.
The Stages Of A Wrongful Death Lawsuit In Florida
Pre-Litigation Investigation And Negotiations
The first stage of a wrongful death lawsuit in Florida is to investigate the circumstances surrounding the death and to negotiate with any potential defendants. This includes gathering relevant medical records, witness statements and other evidence. The goal of this process is to attempt to resolve the case without having to go to court.
Filing a Complaint
If the case cannot be resolved through negotiation, a wrongful death lawsuit can then be filed against the party or parties responsible. This begins with an official complaint that outlines the facts of the case and the legal claims being made. It also explains why a court should award damages to compensate for the death of your loved one.
The discovery process is when both parties exchange information about the case. This can include documents, witness testimony and other evidence. The goal is to establish the facts of the case and strengthen each side’s legal position.
During motion practice, both sides can file motions with the court in an effort to get certain evidence excluded or seek a ruling in their favor. This is done before the trial begins and can help shape the outcome of the case.
Going To Trial
If a settlement is not reached, a trial will be held to determine liability and damages. The focus of the trial is to determine whether the defendant is liable for wrongful death and, if so, what damages should be awarded. During this process, witnesses can testify and evidence can be presented to support each side’s case.
What To Expect When Pursuing A Wrongful Death Lawsuit In Florida
Working Closely With A Personal Injury Lawyer
You should expect to work closely with your lawyer over the course of this process. Florida wrongful death law is complicated, so it is important to have an experienced attorney who can guide you through the process. Your lawyer will be able to explain Florida laws, help you gather evidence, and negotiate with the other side of the case on your behalf.
Emotional Toll Of Reliving The Loss Of A Loved One
It is important to understand that filing a wrongful death lawsuit can be emotionally difficult. You will likely have to relive painful memories and experiences related to your loved one’s passing, as well as face the reality of what happened.
The Importance Of Gathering And Preserving Evidence
Gathering and preserving as much evidence as possible is very important in Florida wrongful death cases. This can include witness statements, medical records, photographs or videos of the accident scene, and other forms of documentation. The more evidence you have to prove your case, the stronger it will be.
The Possibility Of A Settlement Versus Going To Trial
The possibility of settling the case out of court is always there. Florida law requires that any settlement offer must be approved by the court, so you can rest assured that it is fair and in your best interests. If a settlement cannot be reached, your lawyer will prepare for trial and represent you before a judge and jury.
The Potential Impact Of The Outcome Of The Lawsuit On The Plaintiff’s Life
It is important to understand that the outcome of a Florida wrongful death lawsuit can have a significant impact on your life. Depending on the severity of the case and the amount of damages awarded, it can affect your financial security for years to come.
It is also important to remember that any settlement or award will not bring back your loved one–though it may provide some financial relief. It is important to talk openly with your wrongful death lawyer about the potential implications of a successful case or an unsuccessful one. With their counsel and support, you can make informed decisions about how best to proceed.
Want To Learn More? Talk To One Of Our Wrongful Death Attorneys
Florida wrongful death cases can be dangerous territory without experienced legal counsel. For the plaintiff, getting the right kind of advice is essential in gathering and preserving evidence, so that any potential case is prepared should it go to trial. Talking to an experienced personal injury attorney is also important, as they can help you understand the outcomes that may arise from a successful or unsuccessful lawsuit and its effects on your future.
We recommend seeking out an experienced Florida wrongful death lawyer if you are considering filing a wrongful death lawsuit. So don’t hesitate–call (727) 821-3195 today for a free consultation and get started on the path to recovery with one of our expert wrongful death attorneys.