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  • Writer's pictureTom Fowler

Proving Wrongful Death with the Help of a Clive Wrongful Death Lawyer

When a death occurs due to negligence of an individual or entity, the deceased family members are entitled to file a civil lawsuit seeking compensation for damages from the responsible party. The case filed is referred to as a wrongful death case, with each state having very specific rules about wrongful death claims. However, most states use the same guidelines regarding the nature of wrongful death claims to control the procedure of wrongful death cases.

Wrongful death attorneys practice personal injury law to prove that personal injuries were inflicted on the now-deceased individuals. Therefore, the family member of the deceased can file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of their loved one. The plaintiffs can partner with wrongful death lawyers to increase their chances of winning the lawsuit. Plaintiffs must, therefore, contact IA wrongful death lawyers to discuss their case and the way forward.

What Is a Wrongful Death Civil Case?

What Is a Wrongful Death Civil Case?

This is a civil suit that’s filed for monetary damages. Wrongful death civil suits are different from criminal charges. In a criminal case, the prosecutor or district attorney files charges against the defendant. If the defendant is found guilty, he faces jail time or fines. Criminal prosecution doesn’t result in compensation for the deceased’s remaining family members. Fair compensation is only given in civil cases.

Parties involved in a Wrongful Death Case

The victims who file the case are usually referred to as plaintiffs. In this case, the plaintiffs are close family members of the deceased. They bring this personal injury claim on behalf of their deceased loved one. Different states allow various people a right to seek compensation, including; the deceased’s spouse, children, relatives, and estate representative.

Overall, the person or entity that the lawsuit is brought against is referred to as the defendant. This lawsuit usually alleges that the defendant acted negligently and was responsible for the untimely death of the deceased.

What Must Plaintiffs Prove in Wrongful Death Cases?

With the help of wrongful death attorneys in Clive, IA, plaintiffs must prove the elements of the wrongful death claim before compensations are awarded. The lawyer must show the court that the defendant acted negligently and caused the deceased's death. Typically, the elements include; duty of care, causation, damages, and breach of duty of care.

Duty of Care

Wrongful death lawyers must show the defendant disregarded the duty of care owed to the deceased. If the death occurred due to a car accident, the defendant had the duty of care to drive orderly to keep other road users safe. Therefore, the wrongful death attorneys in Clive, IA, would have to prove the defendant was obliged to follow traffic rules and drive safely while on the road.

Breach of Duty of Care

Once the wrongful death lawyers in Clive, IA, have ascertained the duty of care owed to the deceased, the wrongful death attorney must prove the defendant breached the duty of care. In car accidents, the expert will show the court that the defendant failed to follow the traffic rules, like speeding leading to the accident. To investigate these claims, you should shire an experienced wrongful death lawyer in Des Moines IA.


The wrongful death attorney will also have to prove that the cause of the accident was due to another’s negligence. A wrongful death attorney in Clive, IA, will have to prove that the defendant’s actions directly caused the untimely death of the deceased. Even if the defendant was not obeying traffic rules, he would not be liable for damages if the deceased's death was caused by something else.


Wrongful death lawyers in West Des Moines will also have to show quantifiable damages that the loved ones incurred due to the untimely death of the deceased. They may include;

  • Hospitalization due to catastrophic injury

  • Funeral expenses

  • Medical expenses

  • Emotional distress

  • Lost wages

Proving these elements in court requires strong evidence and testimonies from witnesses. Partnering with a personal injury lawyer in Clive, IA, is the plaintiff's best bet if they want a good chance of winning the case. They should therefore schedule a free consultation today with a West Des Moines personal injury lawyer from Tom Fowler Law Firm, as they have the right expertise to give plaintiffs a fighting chance during this trying time.

The Burden of Prove in Wrongful Death Claims

The Burden of Prove in Wrongful Death Claims

While wrongful death lawyers in West Des Moines prove four elements, they must meet the burden of proof. Various states describe personal injury law and respective state bar associations differently. However, they all have common basic principles of proving the elements of negligence by a preponderance of the evidence. Some states allow jurors to determine whether or not the defendant was more likely than not to have caused the death of the deceased.

The burden of proof in civil cases is a bit lower than in criminal cases, where the standard is beyond a reasonable doubt. Wrongful death lawyers in West Des Moines don’t just have to meet the burden of proof by presenting evidence and witnesses in court in a professional manner, as the burden of proof measures the quality and credibility of the evidence presented.

If a personal injury lawyer in West Des Moines fails to prove the burden of proof on all four elements, they will not foresee any damages. Most wrongful death claims are resolved in a settlement outside the court. Depending on the state the plaintiff is in, the judge and jury may determine if the burden of proof has been met.

Other Clive Practice Areas

Why Hire West Des Moines Wrongful Death Lawyers at Tom Fowler Law Firm?

Tom Fowler Law Firm has a team of personal injury lawyers with state bar associations in Clive, IA. These lawyers are well versed with knowledge regarding wrongful death, medical malpractice, and worker's compensation cases, among other legal issues.

The experts will help gather evidence, determine liability, build a case for the deceased loved one, and help them pursue this case to get compensation and justice. Wrongful death lawyers in West Des Moines can also negotiate for a settlement without going to trial. Plaintiffs don’t need to worry about the costs as Tom Fowler Law Firm personal injury lawyers work in contingency.

Grieving family members can feel overwhelmed and try to push back, and lose sight of time. State statute limitations are strict; when the statute's deadline elapses, victims lose their right to sue. Therefore, they should consider contacting Tom Fowler Law Firm to talk to a professional and know their options.

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