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Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?

Wrongful death is one caused by the wrongful act, default, or neglect of another person. According to Ohio law, the “personal representative” of the deceased person’s estate must bring the wrongful death claim to court. The personal representative can be a family member or another person, as long as it is not an entity, such as corporation or business. The personal representative is either designated in the will as the executor or is appointed by the probate court as the administration of the estates.

The following family members can be compensated in a wrongful death case:

  • The surviving spouse of the deceased person
  • Any surviving children, including adopted children
  • The surviving parents of the deceased person
  • Other next of kin of the deceased person

According to the statute of limitations in Ohio, the personal representative has two years from the date of the deceased individual’s death to file a wrongful death action. If he or she attempts to file a wrongful death lawsuit after those two years have passed, the defendant will most likely ask the court to dismiss the case, and the court will comply with that request.

Damages in an Ohio wrongful death lawsuit include:

  • Loss of income and financial support
  • Loss of the services of the deceased individual
  • Loss of care and companionship
  • Loss of prospective inheritance
  • Mental anguish as the result of the untimely death

If you lost a loved one due to the negligent actions of another party in Ohio, contact our Columbus personal injury lawyers at Rourke & Blumenthal and request a free case evaluation today.


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