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Wrongful Death vs. Survival Action – Key Differences to Know

The death of a loved one is painful, more so when it’s unexpected, untimely, and caused by someone else’s negligence. It can also cause severe financial distress, sometimes leaving families struggling to even make ends meet. While nothing can make up for the loss of a family member, taking a legal action against the person or entity whose reckless behavior or negligence caused the death can help reduce the financial burden on the surviving members.

There are two legal recourses available to the family of victim in such cases –wrongful death claim and survival action claim.

Wrongful Death vs. Survival Action – What’s the Difference?

Often considered as two names for the same thing, wrongful death and survival action claims are, in fact, two distinct types of personal injury lawsuits that are designed to compensate the survivors of people who die due to others’ mistakes or negligence for the damages incurred, financial or otherwise.  Let’s dig a little deeper into each of these types of death claims to develop a better understanding.

Wrongful Death Claims

Wrongful death claims compensate the surviving family members – spouse, children, and/or parents – for the financial and emotional damage they have incurred due to the untimely death of their loved one caused by someone else’s negligence.

Survival Action Claims

A survival action lawsuit is filed, fought, and compensated on behalf of the deceased. The compensation in them isn’t determined considering the losses the family of the victim has suffered. It is decided on the basis of the damages or losses the deceased person would have incurred had they survived the accident.

Key Differences between Wrongful Death and Survival Action Claims

Wrongful death and survival action claims are two different types of lawsuits, yet they are quite similar in several ways, which is why many people get confused between the two. To help you understand them better, here are some basic differences between the two:

Wrongful Death ClaimsSurvival Action Claims
Filed by the family members of the deceased.Submitted on behalf of the dead person.
Compensation is calculated considering the losses, tangible and intangible, the family has suffered.Compensation is calculated based on damages the victim would have incurred had they survived the accident.
Compensation is distributed according to the intestacy rules.Compensation is distributed under the terms of the dead person’s will.
The penalties received by survivors are neither subjected to estate taxes nor any claims against the estate.The compensation received is subjected to both estate taxes and creditors’ claims.

Is There Any Time Limit to File Negligence Claims?

The statute of limitations for both wrongful death and survival action claims is two years. However, since these cases can be complex, exceptions apply in certain situations.

Contact The Bourassa Group’s Lawyers to File Negligence Claims in Las Vegas, Nevada

If you have lost a loved one to a negligence accident in Las Vegas, Nevada, our personal injury and negligence case lawyers can help you get compensation for the damages incurred with the lawsuit that best suits your situation. If you’re past the statute of limitations, we can also help determine if you qualify for the exception and can still file a claim and be compensated for your losses.

The Bourassa Law Group has a team of Las Vegas negligence case lawyers with the skills, experience, and expertise required to handle even the most complex cases. Call us at (800)870-8910 for a free consultation.

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