If you’re a Florida resident, you may be wondering what the difference is between a survival action and a wrongful death case. Both types of cases deal with injuries or deaths that were caused by someone else’s negligence, but they are filed under different legal theories. In a survival action, the injured person sues for their own damages, while in a wrongful death case, the heirs of the deceased person sue on their behalf. Below we take a closer look at each type of case and how it works.
Our law firm has seen the most success when representing clients in wrongful death cases. Browse our wrongful death case results here. If someone you love has died as a result of the negligence or recklessness of another person or company, you may be eligible to file a wrongful death claim.
Our attorneys at Herman & Wells can help you determine if that’s the right step for you, and we’ll fight aggressively to get you the compensation you deserve. Call (727) 424-5241 today for a free consultation.
The Cliff Notes: Key Takeaways From This Post
We compared survival action to wrongful death; however, here are the key bullet points if you are in a rush:
- In Florida, a survival action is a claim brought on behalf of the estate of the deceased, compensating for damages before death.
- A wrongful death claim is meant to compensate surviving family members for their losses.
- The statute of limitations in Florida for wrongful death and survival action is two years.
- Immediate family can bring forth a wrongful death claim, while other dependent family may be able to as well.
- An experienced lawyer can help determine which type of claim should be filed after the death of a loved one in Florida.
Under Florida Law, How Is Survival Action Defined?
The wrongful death of a loved one is a tragedy that no one ever wants to go through. Although nothing can bring them back, survivors may be able to find some measure of justice and closure by filing a survival action lawsuit. But what exactly is a survival action?
The term “survival action” is used to describe a claim that a decedent could have filed had they not died. In other words, it is a cause of action that survives the death of the injured party. The main purpose of a survival action is to compensate the estate of the deceased for any damages sustained prior to their death.
In order to file a survival action in Florida, there are certain requirements that must be met. First, the death must have been caused by the wrongful act, negligence, or default of another party. Second, the survivors must be able to prove that they have suffered financial damages as a result of the death.
If you have lost a loved one due to the wrongful act of another party, you may be entitled to file a survival action. An experienced wrongful death attorney can help you determine if you meet the requirements and guide you through the legal process.
How Does Survival Action Differ From Wrongful Death in Florida?
The state of Florida recognizes survival action and wrongful death claims that may be brought up following the death of a loved one. While both involve the death of an individual, there are important distinctions between the two. Here we explain the key differences between survival action and wrongful death claims in Florida.
What Is a Survival Action Claim in Florida?
A survival action claim is brought on behalf of the estate of the deceased individual. This type of claim is meant to compensate the estate for damages that the deceased person sustained prior to their death. This may include things like medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages. Importantly, a survival claim is brought against the party or parties who caused the death of the individual, not the estate.
What Is a Wrongful Death Claim in Florida?
A wrongful death claim, on the other hand, is meant to compensate the surviving family members of the deceased for their losses. This may include things like loss of companionship, loss of financial support, and funeral expenses. A wrongful death claim is brought against the party or parties who caused the death of the individual.
Which Type of Claim Should I Bring After the Death of a Loved One in Florida?
The type of claim that you should bring after the death of a loved one in Florida will depend on the specific facts and circumstances of your case. In some cases, it may be appropriate to bring both a survival action claim and a wrongful death claim. An experienced Florida wrongful death lawyer can help you understand which type of claim is right for you.
The Statute of Limitations for Survival Action in Florida
If you’ve recently lost a loved one and are considering filing a wrongful death or survival action, it’s important to be aware of the statute of limitations. In Florida, the statute of limitations for wrongful death and survival action is two years. This means that you have two years from the date of death to file a wrongful death or survival action lawsuit. If you do not file within this time frame, your case will likely be barred.
The statute of limitations can be extended in some circumstances, such as if the cause of death is not known until after the two-year period has expired. However, it is always best to speak with an experienced wrongful death lawyer as soon as possible to ensure that your case is filed in a timely manner. If you have lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligence or wrongful act, contact our office today to schedule a free consultation.
Which Surviving Family Members Are Eligible For Compensation?
It is important to understand that not every family member will be able to seek compensation in a wrongful death claim. In most cases, only the immediate family members of the deceased will be able to bring forth a claim. This includes the surviving spouse, children, and sometimes the parents of the deceased.
In some cases, other family members may be able to seek compensation as well. This would include any family member who was financially dependent on the deceased. For example, if a grandchild was living with and being financially supported by the deceased, that grandchild would likely be able to file a wrongful death claim.
How Are Damages Assigned in Wrongful Death and Survival Action Cases in Florida?
The goal of a wrongful death claim is to recover damages for the survivors’ losses, including the loss of the victim’s love, companionship, and support. A survival action claim, on the other hand, is meant to compensate the victim’s estate for damages the victim incurred before death, such as pain and suffering or medical bills.
In Florida, wrongful death claims are brought by the victim’s surviving spouse, children, or parents. If there is no surviving spouse, child, or parent, then the claim may be brought by the victim’s estate. A survival action claim can be brought by either the victim’s estate or the victim’s survivors.
The damages that can be recovered in a wrongful death claim include:
- The victim’s lost earnings and benefits
- The cost of the victim’s funeral and burial
- The value of the victim’s love, companionship, and support
The damages that can be recovered in a survival action claim include:
- The victim’s pain and suffering before death
- The victim’s medical bills
If you have lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact an experienced wrongful death and survival action attorney in Florida to learn more about your legal rights and options. Clifford Wells has over 20 years of experience advocating for clients with wrongful death claims in Pinellas Park.
What Should You Do First If You’ve Lost a Loved One in Florida?
If you’ve lost a loved one in Florida, the first thing you should do is consult with an experienced wrongful death attorney. While it may be difficult to think about taking legal action during this time of grieving, it’s important to know that you have options and a wrongful death attorney can help you understand what those are.
Should You Contact a Wrongful Death Attorney About Survival Action?
In order to bring a survival action, the estate must first contact an attorney. An experienced attorney will be able to determine whether or not the claim is viable and will guide the estate through the process of filing a lawsuit. If you have lost a loved one as a result of wrongful death, don’t hesitate to contact an attorney to discuss your legal options.
Book a Free Consultation With Our Experienced Attorneys in Florida
At Herman & Wells, we understand the devastation that wrongful death can cause. We also know that no amount of money can ever make up for the loss of a loved one. However, filing a wrongful death lawsuit can help ease the financial burden and bring some semblance of justice.
If you’ve lost a loved one in Florida, contact our experienced wrongful death attorneys today for a free consultation. We’ll review your case and help you understand your legal options. Call us today at (727) 821-3195.