Wrongful Death Attorneys Serving Families in Columbus and All of Ohio

A wrongful death attorney at Colombo Law can help you and your family obtain the compensation you deserve for the untimely loss of a loved one. No amount of money can bring a beloved relative back, but taking legal action can help you safeguard your financial future and get justice for the dearly departed.

To determine whether someone else’s negligence was a factor in your loved one’s death, our wrongful death lawyers perform a comprehensive investigation of the incident. We collect all necessary evidence, evaluate the damages you have sustained, and strive to hold the defendant(s) accountable for their actions.

You can also count on Colombo Law to provide you with guidance and support during this difficult time. Our team is always available to answer your questions and give you the personalized attention you deserve.

For a FREE case review with a Columbus wrongful death lawyer, call 614-362-7000 today. Colombo Law serves clients in the Columbus metropolitan area and throughout Ohio.

How do you deal with wrongful death? | Colombo Law

What Is Considered Wrongful Death in Ohio?

Ohio law defines a wrongful death as a death that occurs due to the “wrongful act, neglect, or default” of another. The right to legal action and recovery of damages survives the victim’s death.

As with personal injury matters, negligence on the part of the defendant must be established to obtain compensation for wrongful death. It is in your best interest to consult an experienced wrongful death attorney as soon as possible to determine the viability of your claim.

Can You Sue for Wrongful Death in Ohio?

If you are reeling from the death of a family member, taking legal action is probably not at the top of your mind. A wrongful death lawyer at Colombo Law can investigate the circumstances of your loved one’s death and determine what your legal rights and options are.

Your right to sue for wrongful death is contingent on satisfying several elements:

  1. Duty of Care: The duty of care refers to the obligation an individual or entity owes to another. For example, all motorists have a duty to obey traffic laws and the rules of the road.
  2. Breach of duty: A breach is a failure to uphold the particular duty in question. For example, speeding would be considered a breach of a motorist’s duty to other drivers, pedestrians, etc.
  3. Causation: The evidence must show that the defendant’s actions or failure to act (i.e., the breach) was a cause of your loved one’s death.
  4. Damages: Finally, you need to show that you and your family incurred compensable damages due to the death of your loved one.

A Columbus wrongful death lawyer can help you prove each of these elements. Our attorneys are well-versed in the challenges involved in wrongful death cases, and we will take on these burdens so you and your family can focus on healing.

Contact Colombo Law for FREE Today

Types of Wrongful Death Cases Our Attorneys Handle

For 25 years, Colombo Law has been providing superior legal service. We focus exclusively on personal injury law, meaning we have an in-depth understanding of injured victims’ needs and concerns. Sometimes, the victim of an accident tragically dies. If the worst happens, our team can pursue a wrongful death claim on behalf of the surviving family members.

We handle a multitude of wrongful death cases on behalf of clients in Columbus and throughout Ohio. Our experience encompasses the following types of claims:

Every case is different. Our proven wrongful death attorneys will explore all of your options for holding those responsible to account and seeking maximum compensation for all aspects of your tragic loss.

columbus wrongful death lawyer

How a Wrongful Death Attorney Can Help

Attorneys at Colombo Law have more than 40 years of combined experience representing the victims of others’ negligence. You and your family are not alone in seeking justice. Our lawyers can help guide you through each step of the process, taking the burden off your shoulders whenever possible.

Important ways a wrongful death attorney at our firm can assist you include:

  • Reviewing your case for FREE—our office is in Columbus, but we can travel to meet with you
  • Answering your questions and explaining your legal options
  • Promptly investigating the incident that led to your loved one’s death
  • Obtaining and reviewing relevant documentation, such as medical records and the autopsy report
  • Gathering other necessary evidence, such as photographs, eyewitness testimony, accident reports, etc.
  • Preparing your case with the assistance of expert witnesses
  • Identifying the individuals and/or entities responsible for your relative’s death
  • Communicating with insurance companies and negotiating a fair settlement on your behalf
  • Providing regular updates on your case—we make ourselves available to you at all times to respond to questions, discuss settlement offers, etc.
  • If necessary, filing a wrongful death lawsuit and preparing for trial

Colombo Law has a reputation for taking cases to trial—and winning. Not all law firms are willing to go this extra mile, but our team has the skills, resources, and courtroom experience to represent you effectively. We have won millions of dollars for our clients in personal injury and wrongful death cases.

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What Are the Damages for Wrongful Death in Ohio?

The financial impact of losing a loved one can be immense. Such a loss also has enormous emotional and psychological repercussions for surviving family members.

A Columbus wrongful death lawyer at Colombo Law can pursue the full compensation you and your family deserve. You may be entitled to recovery of the following damages in a wrongful death claim:

  • Funeral expenses
  • The cost of burial or cremation
  • Medical and end-of-life expenses (if death was not instantaneous)
  • Loss of your loved one’s earnings and the income he or she would have made
  • Conscious pain and suffering of the decedent prior to death
  • Loss of the value of services provided by the decedent (such as homemaking, childcare, maintenance of the home, etc.)
  • Mental and emotional distress of surviving family members
  • Loss of companionship, consortium, society, and support
  • Punitive damages (in some cases)

Many states have placed caps on the amount and type of damages that can be recovered in wrongful death claims. Although certain damages for personal injury are capped in Ohio, no such restrictions apply to damages for wrongful death. This is actually codified in the Ohio Constitution’s Bill of Rights.

columbus wrongful death lawyer

Unlike a number of other states, Ohio recognizes the constitutional right of families to maximum recovery of damages for the wrongful death of a loved one. A wrongful death attorney at Colombo Law can build a strong case on your behalf and fight for an outcome that fairly compensates you and your family.

Read More: What Damages Can I Recover in a Wrongful Death Claim?

Frequently Asked Questions About Wrong Death Claims

Who Can Sue for Wrongful Death in Ohio?

Ohio law distinguishes between who can file a wrongful death lawsuit and those who are entitled to the proceeds if the claim succeeds. In Ohio, the personal representative of the deceased is the only one who can bring a claim for wrongful death.

The personal representative is an individual named as such in the decedent’s will (also known as an executor). Or, if your loved one died without a will, the personal representative will be appointed by the probate court (otherwise known as an administrator).

How Are Wrongful Death Settlements Calculated?

It is crucial to accurately calculate the totality of your losses after the loss of your loved one. The compensation available for wrongful death may be substantial, but the evidence must support the amount you pursue.

How do you quantify the “value” of someone’s life? Insurance companies generally look at the following to calculate a settlement offer:

  • The age and overall health of the decedent
  • Their marital status
  • Whether they have children or other dependents
  • Occupational details, such as the decedent’s employment history, education, training, etc.
  • The reported value of the family’s losses
  • Questions of liability—if fault is disputed, the insurance company may offer less or refuse to settle

As wrongful death lawyers, we carefully calculate the total value of the damages sustained by surviving family members. In addition to the current monetary losses, the experts we work with evaluate factors such as age, health, life expectancy, and earning potential to support claims for future economic and non-economic damages.

Hiring a Columbus wrongful death lawyer is essential for ensuring that all of your damages are accounted for and there is sufficient proof for you to recover the compensation you deserve. A wrongful death attorney at Colombo Law can negotiate a favorable settlement on your behalf or, if necessary, file a lawsuit and take your case to trial.

Who Are the Beneficiaries of Wrongful Death in Ohio?

The beneficiaries in a wrongful death claim are the individuals entitled to the proceeds if the claim is successful. According to Ohio law, wrongful death claims must be brought exclusively for the benefit of:

  • The surviving spouse
  • The child or children of the deceased (if applicable)
  • The surviving parent or parents of the deceased

Other next of kin (such as siblings, grandparents, and others) may also be entitled to compensation for wrongful death. Generally speaking, the personal representative of the deceased is responsible for equitably administering the proceeds based on each beneficiary’s age, condition, and the losses they have suffered.

How Do You Split a Wrongful Death Settlement in Ohio?

Beneficiaries of equal “consanguinity” to the decedent (i.e., the same degree of relation) have the right to adjust among themselves the share of proceeds from a wrongful death claim. However, if an agreement cannot be reached, the decision will be deferred to the court.

Splitting a wrongful death settlement or trial award can be challenging when family disagreements arise. A Columbus wrongful death lawyer can provide knowledgeable guidance and support to ensure each surviving relative gets their fair share.

What Is a Survival Action?

Damages the deceased would have been entitled to had they survived—such as medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering—may still be recovered through a survival action. The personal representative may file both a survival action and a wrongful death claim.

Any damages recovered in a survival action are paid to the estate. The personal representative is then responsible for distributing the proceeds in accordance with the decedent’s will. If the decedent died without a valid will in place, any funds must be distributed according to Ohio’s law of intestate succession.

What Is the Statute of Limitations for Wrongful Death Claims?

Wrongful death claims are subject to strict legal time limits in Ohio. The personal representative of the decedent has just 2 years from the date the victim passed away to file a wrongful death lawsuit.

This statute of limitations applies to wrongful death claims arising from all forms of negligence, except when death occurs due to a defective product. In these cases, a claim can be made against the manufacturer or supplier of the product up to 10 years after:

“…the product was delivered to its first purchaser or first lessee who was not engaged in a business in which the product was used as a component in the production, construction, creation, assembly, or rebuilding of another product.”

Ohio Revised Code § 2125.02(D)(2)(a))

Regardless of the circumstances of your loved one’s death, it is important to consult an attorney as soon as possible if you believe the negligence of another was a factor. Although it is not always necessary to file a lawsuit to recover compensation for wrongful death, it is crucial not to miss out on the limited time you have to file a lawsuit.

Why Choose Colombo Law for Your Wrongful Death Claim?

Wrongful death cases can be extremely challenging. In addition to the emotional impact of losing someone you love, the loss of a family member can have major financial implications as well.

A Columbus wrongful death lawyer at Colombo Law can help you through this difficult time. Our attorneys are committed to the success of your case, and we bring decades of combined experience handling a wide variety of claims where serious injuries and wrongful death are common outcomes.

The biggest reasons to hire a wrongful death attorney at Colombo Law include:

  • No Fee Promise: There is no upfront cost to contact Colombo Law about your case. What’s more, you will not pay any fees unless and until we settle your case or win at trial.
  • Experience: Our firm has unparalleled experience handling complex personal injury litigation. We apply this skill and advanced knowledge to cases involving wrongful death.
  • Results: Colombo Law has earned millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for our clients. We have a 99% Win Rate because of the care we take in the cases we select and our aggressive representation of each client’s best interest.
  • Trial Attorneys: Many attorneys are content to settle cases; some never set foot in a courtroom. At Colombo Law, we prepare every case as though it will go to trial, and we never hesitate to go to court if it presents the best opportunity to recover the compensation you deserve.
  • The Colombo Advantage: Caring is a cornerstone of the client experience at Colombo Law. Each member of our team recognizes that you have suffered an unimaginable loss, and we see it as our responsibility not only to protect your legal rights but to provide compassionate support after the wrongful death of a loved one.

Our team knows that time is of the essence when a loved one is killed in an accident. We start building your case right away, investigating what caused your loved one’s death, identifying who is responsible, and collecting the evidence necessary to hold individuals, companies, and other negligent parties accountable.

Wrongful death claims often involve issues of complex liability and significant damages. Both of these issues make it crucial to hire a knowledgeable, experienced wrongful death attorney who can fight to maximize your compensation via settlement negotiations or, if necessary, by taking your case to trial.

columbus wrongful death lawyer

Contact a Columbus Wrongful Death Lawyer Today

The loss of a loved one is devastating no matter the circumstances. However, knowing that a member of your family was killed due to someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing is particularly trying.

At Colombo Law, we represent individuals and families whose relatives died due to the carelessness of another party. Our wrongful death attorneys can pursue the full compensation you deserve for the untimely passing of your family member.

For a FREE case review, call 614-362-7000 to speak with a wrongful death lawyer. Colombo Law serves all of Ohio from our office in Columbus.