Wrongful death claims and survival action claims are often mixed up and mistaken for each other. These two separate claims exist to help the surviving family members and dependents recover financial compensation for their loss. Following the death of a loved one, the survivors may typically file one or the other to collect compensation for damages.

If you’ve recently lost a loved one and feel you are entitled to compensation then you need to know which claim to file. Here are the distinctions between a wrongful death claim and a survival action claim in the state of Florida.

Wrongful Death Claim

In the case of a wrongful death claim the survivors of the deceased can receive financial compensation for their loss. This type of claim occurs when the death of the decedent is the direct result of the other party’s negligence or intentional conduct. The victim in this type of case has passed away so they are unable to file a claim against the party that is responsible. However, the surviving family members or dependents of the deceased can file a wrongful death claim to be compensated for the damages and emotional suffering.

Survival Action Claim

Instead of filing a wrongful death claim the survivors may file a survival action claim instead. This type of claim is an extension of a pre-existing legal claim. The pre-existing claim would have already been pursued prior to the death of the victim in the case. The damages collected from a survival action claim include compensation that the deceased would have been entitled to collect should they have survived the injury. In some cases, the injury may not be related at all to the cause of death. For example, if the decedent had been involved in a slip and fall case that resulted in back surgery, but they passed away months later from a stroke, then the survivors could file a survival action claim to receive compensation from the responsible party for the back surgery expenses.

If you are unsure of whether you are entitled compensation due to a survival action or wrongful death claim, then you should seek the help of an experienced professional. An expert, such as a qualified attorney, will analyze your case to determine the best course of action to take for legal compensation.

In the state of Florida, the law typically requires the surviving family members or dependents to pick between filing a wrongful death claim or a survival action claim. This is why it is crucial to hire a wrongful death attorney with plenty of experience with these types of cases. The attorney will be able to advise you on which type of claim is best suited to your individual case. Following a consultation, your attorney will have a better understanding of your unique situation and can advise you accordingly. It may seem difficult to determine which type of case you have, but remember that you do not have to make that decision alone. A professional wrongful death lawyer will be able to help you every step of the way, from determining which type of claim to file to pursuing your rights in court.