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New York’s New Wrongful Death Statute Explained

One of the worst tragedies a family can experience is the loss of a loved one in a preventable accident. Unfortunately, this occurs far too often in New York, and many families are forced to file “wrongful death” claims on behalf of their loved ones. These personal injury lawsuits can help families recover compensation for missed future wages, unpaid medical expenses, funeral expenses, emotional distress, and any other damages they might have experienced. Recently, the State of New York considered new legislation that would overhaul the existing wrongful death statute. But what exactly is this new legislation, and how might it help grieving families?


The New Wrongful Death Statute May Make it Easier for Grieving Families


If approved, a new bill would make it easier for grieving families to file wrongful death claims. Not only that, but families would have the ability to claim emotional anguish – potentially leading to higher settlements and awards. In addition, more families would have the ability to bring these claims forward, as the bill would broaden the scope of eligible family members.


On the other hand, the statute also creates a shorter statute of limitations. This means that family members would have a shorter time limit with which to file their claims and seek compensation. This may have the effect of limiting legal action for families that wait too long. That said, families can avoid issues associated with shorter limits if they simply move quickly and book consultations with attorneys as early as they can.


Speaking about the bill in May, Senator Brad Hoylman-Sigal stated:


“New York is out of step with 47 other states’ wrongful death laws. We’ve denied countless family members the proper consideration for their loved ones since the current statute considers only economic loss. Courts are forced to discount the value of lives in wrongful death actions for those who aren’t breadwinners for their families, resulting in a disproportionate negative impact on people of color, women, children, seniors and New Yorkers with disabilities. We’ve responded to the governor’s concerns and will pass the Act again this session.”


In its previous form, the bill was rejected by Governor Kathy Hochul because it raised concerns about insurance premiums and increased liability for various business groups, medical organizations, and municipal governments across the state.


Where Can I Find a Wrongful Death Attorney in New York?


If you have been searching for a qualified, experienced wrongful death attorney in New York, look no further than the Glassman Law Group. Over the years, we have helped numerous families with wrongful death claims, and we know how traumatic and life-altering these incidents can be. Although new legislation may alter New York’s wrongful death statute, the same basic principles always apply to these lawsuits. You always need to approach your wrongful death claim in a careful, efficient manner. Book your consultation, and you can get started with an effective action plan right away.

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