A wrongful death case exists when one person dies because of another person's negligence. Wrongful death cases can range from car accidents to medical malpractice to employer negligence. Suing a police officer for wrongful death is not as easy as suing a non-police officer, however, this does not mean that the police are completely immune to wrongful death lawsuits. If you believe that you have a wrongful death case against the police and wish to proceed with your case, these answers to frequently asked questions will help you get started.
When can you sue the police for wrongful death?
Police officers can't be sued for negligence that results in a death. However, police officers can be sued for unreasonable and willful behavior that leads to a death. Often wrongful death lawsuits against the police involve a police officer's use of excessive force.
What qualifies as "excessive force" in a police confrontation?
If you decide to sue and your case goes to court, what qualifies as "excessive force" will be determined by a jury. However, an experienced attorney will be able to tell you if you have a case against the police.
Do you have to get a lawyer to sue the police for wrongful death?
You can sue for wrongful death without an attorney. However, there are many benefits to hiring an attorney. To begin with, suing a police officer for wrongful death can be more complicated than suing someone else, because police officers have special protections. Having a lawyer on your side can help you navigate a complex and confusing legal situation, and that can give you the greatest chance for success. In addition, your attorney will have resources, like a team of aids and other employees, at his or her disposal. These aids will help with your case to give you a greater advantage in court.
How can you find a wrongful death attorney who is right for your case?
As you start looking for a wrongful death attorney, contact lawyers in your area. Ask each attorney you speak with whether or not he or she has handled cases similar to yours. Once you've found wrongful death attorneys who have argued cases involving the police, ask each attorney how he or she would proceed with your case. Pick the attorney who answers your questions to your complete satisfaction, and who has a track record for success. Contact a business, such as the Fitzsimmons & Vervaecke Law Firm, for more information.