What is a Wrongful Death Claim?
A wrongful death action is brought against a negligent person, business or entity that caused an accident that led to an individual’s death. A wrongful death claim provides compensation to the survivors of a loved one who lost their life because someone else was negligent.
How long do I have to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Arizona?
Arizona, like other states, limits the time frame a family or an estate has to file a claim over a potential wrongful death. The time limit is known as a “statute of limitations,” because it is set by state law. The deadline isn’t related to a criminal case that could be filed about the person’s death or the events that caused it.
In Arizona, a wrongful death case must be filed within two years of the date of the deceased person’s death. If the case isn’t filed within the time limit, the court will probably refuse to hear it all together. It’s essential to make sure you comply with this deadline, to preserve your legal rights.
However, Section 12-821.01 of the Arizona Revised Statutes requires a claimant to file a “notice of claim” before filing suit against a public entity (such as the State of Arizona). The claimant is required by law to set forth “a specific amount for which the claim may be settled and the facts supporting that amount” (the “supporting-facts requirement”).
Wrongful death claims can result from car crashes, motorcycle or bicycle crashes, work-related accidents on a job site, defective products, and other types of accidents which can result in the death of a person. Wrongful death claims can arise from crashes that involve poor or unsafe roads and highways.
It takes a lot of time to prepare and file paperwork in a wrongful death case adequately. Don’t wait until the last minute before the statute of limitations expires to contact an attorney. You could forfeit your right ever to file a claim if you wait too long.
Coping with the loss of a loved one is a difficult time for any family. Your best option is to contact an experienced wrongful death attorney as soon as you can. The attorney can help you decide how to best move forward within the time frame allowed by law.