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3 Steps Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Cleveland Wrongful Death

Step 1: Collect All Pertinent Documentation

three steps to file wrongful death case ohioYou can begin by collecting all documents and paperwork related to your loved one’s illness or injury, the accident or circumstances that led to his or her harm, and finally death.

Also collect all relative information as to how your loved one’s death has affected family members, both emotionally and financially. The more proof and information you collect, the better. You can gather it into several folders and keep the info handy.

Some of the types of documents you can add to your file include:

  • Medical records;
  • Medical and funeral expenses;
  • Your loved one’s previous income and benefits information;
  • Proof of death; and
  • Any evidence that someone else was responsible for the death.

Step 2: Start Drawing Up Papers with an Attorney

Schedule an appointment with an attorney who handles wrongful death cases in the Cleveland area and begin working. Families must open an estate in probate court that benefits all of the survivors, and then the court will appoint an administrator who manages the estate, of which the wrongful death claim is an asset.

The administrator works with the attorney to file the lawsuit. A local attorney will explain the basic filing protocol and begin drawing up the necessary forms. 

During this phase of your case, your lawyer will also: 

  • Investigate the events and speak with witnesses;
  • Start helping you compile more extensive evidence;
  • Set up meetings with certified field experts to support your case (an economist, a social worker, a mental health specialist);
  • Help you calculate your damages;
  • Construct your case in an organized and compelling manner;
  • Negotiate with the defendant’s attorneys;
  • Use case-specific strategies to help demonstrate your damages and the other party’s liability;
  • Prepare a case for court should it come to that; and
  • Fight for the best possible settlement.

Step 3: Help Speed Along the Claims Process

As your attorney works to satisfy all the elements of the case, you can help the case move along more swiftly by adhering to your attorney’s directives and avoiding procrastination. If you’re supposed to collect a certain document or go to a meeting, make your best effort to do it in a timely manner.

You don’t want to delay filing a wrongful death claim, first, because there is a time limit on how long you have to file. Filing after the time limit is exceeded will bar your right to claiming restitution. The suit must be filed within two years of the death per Ohio Revised Code §2125.02(D). Second, the longer you wait to file, the longer it will take for you obtain a settlement and be done with the whole thing.

Our Wrongful Death Lawyers in Cleveland are Here to Help

If you need legal counsel in or near Cleveland, call Ryan, LLP regarding a wrongful death case, contact us today to schedule a free consultation (877) 864-9495 or 216-363-6028.  You can also email us at info@ryanllp.com.

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