Wrongful Death Lawyers Serving Columbus Families
We will pursue accountability and justice for your family
Losing a loved one is painful no matter what but losing someone unexpectedly because of someone else’s negligence is truly devastating. In our years practicing law, we’ve seen cases that have absolutely broken our hearts – both because of the life lost, and the pain of the people left behind.
We are honored to fight for accountability and fair compensation for Ohio families who have suffered tragedies caused by negligence. Mani Ellis & Layne, PLLC has the experience, resources, and dedication needed to fight for your family. If you’ve lost a loved one, we will listen to your story and explain your legal options. Schedule your free consultation at our Columbus office.
What is a wrongful death claim in Ohio?
Under Ohio law, a wrongful death is a death caused by another person’s “wrongful act, default, or neglect” that would have allowed the deceased person to file a personal injury lawsuit, had they not died. For example, just as a person injured in a car accident can file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver, the estate of a person who dies in a fatal car accident can file a wrongful death claim against the driver who caused the accident.
A wrongful death claim is a civil claim for damages (financial compensation), separate and distinct from any criminal charges (such as homicide or manslaughter) filed by the State of Ohio in connection with the same death. The standard of proof is lower in civil court, so it may be possible to recover damages in a wrongful death claim even if the party that caused the death is acquitted or the charges are dismissed in criminal court.
In Ohio, a wrongful death claim can only be brought by the personal representative (executor) of the deceased person’s estate – usually, this person is named in the deceased person’s will, or appointed by the court if there is no will.
Damages in wrongful death claims in Ohio
The purpose of a wrongful death claim is to recover financial compensation for losses associated with the death. Usually, the surviving spouse and children receive this compensation; other relatives, such as siblings and parents, can also recover if they can demonstrate their losses in court. Depending on the circumstances, we may be able to pursue compensation for:
- Loss of financial support provided by the deceased person.
- Loss of household services like yardwork and childcare that the deceased person provided.
- Loss of care, companionship, advice, guidance, counsel, instruction, and society provided by the deceased person.
- Loss of prospective inheritance that the deceased person’s spouse or children would have received if the person had survived and subsequently built more wealth.
- Mental anguish experienced by surviving family members due to the death.
No amount of money can truly compensate for the loss of a human life, but a successful wrongful death claim can help the family move forward. For instance, if the deceased person was the primary caregiver for children while their spouse worked, a wrongful death claim can provide replacement income to allow the surviving parent to stay home with the children. In addition, holding someone definitively responsible for your loved one’s death provides a degree of closure – and helps to protect other Ohio families from suffering similar losses.
We are honored to stand up for grieving families in Columbus
We understand you’re badly hurting and the last thing you want to deal with is a legal battle. That’s why we encourage you to speak with us as soon as possible. If you hire Mani Ellis & Layne to represent you, we will deal with the legal situation while you focus on healing. We will advise you of your legal options, and the ultimate choice of whether to pursue legal action is always yours. If you do choose to move forward, we will be firmly on your family’s side every step of the way, and there is never a fee unless and until we win your case.
If you’ve lost a loved one in an accident caused by negligence, don’t deal with what comes next alone. We can advise you, guide you, and pursue justice for your family to the fullest extent of the law. Schedule your free consultation with a Columbus wrongful death attorney today. There is no cost, no obligation, and no pressure, just answers about your family’s rights.