Wrongful Death Lawyers Hamilton Ontario
Losing a loved one is never easy. Losing a loved one by sudden death in a car accident or because of someone’s carelessness or negligence is even worse. One of the most devastating tragedies your family can face is the loss of a loved one through a serious accident.
When a death is expected, the onset of grief and loss are feelings you know you will face. However, when a death is unexpected and traumatic, feelings of grief, shock, and disbelief are much more pronounced. We assume our loved ones will reach old age, but death can come earlier than expected—and when it happens, we are unprepared. We are not ready and we become lost.
Seeking legal advice may be the last thing on your mind, but if someone you love has been killed due to another person’s negligence, reaching a Hamilton wrongful death lawyer as soon as possible is vital.
While no amount of money or help from a lawyer can help you repair the past and undo the damage that has been done, certain laws protect those who have lost loved ones. Funeral costs can be paid immediately, and certain death benefits can be payable to a spouse, a dependent of the deceased, and people to whom the deceased had financial obligations, such as a child receiving child support.
Lawyers for Wrongful Death Cases Throughout Ontario
Matt Lalande has been working on behalf of families that have lost loved ones for the past fourteen years in Hamilton and across Ontario. As a respected wrongful death lawyer, he will vigorously fight for the full value of your case. Our firm is not one that settles quickly for what insurance companies are willing to pay, but we see your case through fully—even to trial, if necessary.
As wrongful death lawyers, our goal is to not only obtain compensation on your behalf for your pain and loss, but also to help financially protect your children and family by making sure there is enough money in place to continue funding shared family expenses, pay the mortgage, put food on the table, and pay for kids’ activities. The untimely loss of your loved one shouldn’t mean you can’t afford vehicle payments, tuition, or any other type of shared expense.
Our clients should not have to worry about who’s going to pay the mortgage and how they’re going to cover their bills. We worry so you don’t have to.
What Is My Family Entitled to for Losing a Loved One?
If you have lost a loved one, you may be able to file a lawsuit or make a claim against the individual or driver who caused your loved one’s death. In Ontario, surviving eligible family members are entitled to make a claim or sue because of the injury or death of another family member—in particular, the spouse, children, grandparents, parents, siblings, and grandchildren are able to sue for damages.
Damages in Hamilton wrongful death cases are typically composed of various individual claims eligible claimants would make. For example, if your loved one suffered before his or her death, his or her estate can make a claim for pain and suffering. This is something we typically see with severe car or motorcycle accident cases involving death.
Family members are also able to sue for the care, guidance, or companionship the deceased would have provided to his or her family members had he or she not died suddenly.
What Happens to Your Lost Family Income?
What happens if the breadwinner of the family passes away unexpectedly? Who will help pay the mortgage, the bills, tuition, hockey, dancing, etc.? If the loved one who died was working at the time of death, and it can be shown that he or she would’ve continued to earn income in the future, then the survivors and family members may claim a loss to compensate them for a portion of the lost income.
This is what we call a “dependency” claim. It is calculated based on the net income your loved one would have contributed to your family members and the household. As experienced wrongful death lawyers in Hamilton, we certainly know how to have the value of the dependency claim properly assessed in order to help protect your family’s financial future.
It would be unfair for surviving family members to suffer financially because their loved one was taken away unexpectedly by someone else’s negligence. A lawyer from our firm will seek justice and nothing less.
Have You Lost Income Because Your Loved One Died?
In addition to the decedent’s lost income, a surviving spouse may also have suffered a personal income loss as a result of the death of a family member. If there is factual evidence to prove that the loss was so profound that you are incapable of working either part-time or full-time or you now are working in a less stressful, lower-paying job, you might also have a claim for direct financial loss.
There is no doubt that, in some situations, a spouse suffers direct financial losses because of the death of a loved one, including lost earnings or income because of his or her inability to work.
What About the Loss of a Pension or Benefits?
In Ontario, the loss of a spouse’s pension or benefits can certainly be quantified. In some cases, a person’s death may end medical, dental, and drug coverage benefits for a survivor. These benefits can be claimed without any type of dependency reduction.
Similarly, the loss of pension is the loss of income which derives from a contractual agreement. A surviving spouse certainly has a claim to a deceased’s pension income. This is a direct financial loss for income he or she otherwise would have received directly if not for the death of a spouse.
What Else Is a Surviving Loved One Entitled to for Wrongful Death in Hamilton?
In addition to compensation for the loss of care, guidance, and companionship (economic and non-economic aspects), the loss of past and future income, dependency losses, wage losses, pension reduction, and lost benefits, surviving loved ones may be entitled to the cost of funeral expenses.
It is important that you engage in a meticulous analysis and recording of all your expenses, including travel, parking, meals, and any other funeral-related expenses reasonably incurred as a result of the death of your loved one in Hamilton.
You may also be entitled to past and future care costs, management fees for lump-sum compensation awards for future pecuniary losses, guardianship application costs and fees, premium costs for annuities to fund mandatory structures, and grossing up awards to offset the effects of income tax on awards for future losses.
No Fees Until We Win Your Hamilton Wrongful Death Case
We understand that a legal bill is the last thing you need after losing a loved one. We also understand that you may be hesitant to contact a Hamilton wrongful death claim lawyer because it may cost too much.
At our firm, we never charge up-front fees to meet and talk about what rights you might have in your wrongful death case. Our lawyers are happy to spend as much time with you as you need—with absolutely no obligation. In fact, we encourage you to meet several lawyers to find the best fit for your family.
Secondly, if you decide to retain Lalande & Company Lawyers, we will never ask you for money up front. There are no fees or expenses paid unless we win your claim. When we accept a wrongful death case in Hamilton, we pursue it with the dedication and devotion that your family deserves.
We are happy to advance the entire cost of handling your lawsuit, only recovering our fees upon the successful resolution of your case. Our legal fees and how you are charged will be fully laid out for you in an easy-to-read agreement so you and your family understand exactly how we are reimbursed at the end of your case.
What Is Your Wrongful Death Case Worth?
You and your family are likely wondering about the value of your Hamilton wrongful death case as you research the legal process and the right law firm to assist you. Unfortunately, it is simply impossible to estimate what a wrongful death case is worth.
However, we endeavor to meet with our clients throughout their cases (before mediation, pretrial, or trial) to discuss both their expectations and possible ranges of compensation that may be recovered via settlement or verdict. We believe that any lawyer who estimates the value of a wrongful death case prior to obtaining proper opinions is incorrect and is providing inaccurate information.
The possible ranges of compensation can be realistically evaluated as the case progresses, however. While insurance companies are dedicated to minimizing your compensation, an experienced wrongful death lawyer in Hamilton will present your case in a professional and persuasive way. Factors that will no doubt be important in determining your entitlement to compensation may include the following:
- Whether the deceased suffered before death
- How long the deceased was alive before death
- How the deceased died
- Who the defendants are
- The pain and loss you and your family have suffered
- The loss of guidance children and family members have suffered
- The loss of companionship a spouse or family members have suffered
- The lost income the deceased can no longer generate for the family
- Funeral costs and additional expenses surrounding the death
- Lost benefits, pensions, and other costs and expenses surrounding the death
- The loss of housekeeping and home maintenance the deceased would have provided
Equally important is the reputation of the insurance company defending your case. While all insurance companies are more than happy to withdraw monthly premiums from the bank accounts of their policyholders, several insurance companies have an obvious reputation for paying out as little as possible.
No matter how your loved one died, the pain of knowing the his or her death might have been preventable is extremely difficult to stomach. The grieving process is made worse by the financial burden death creates. If you are struggling with the loss of your loved one, Lalande & Company is here to help.
If you have lose a loved one, we can help.
Lalande & Company Lawyers understands that dealing with an insurance company can be a complex, confusing, and aggravating time for families who have lost loved ones. We also understand that many people have never dealt with a wrongful death lawyer before.
Our firm makes it easy. We encourage any inquiries, and we will discuss your legal options thoroughly. Our consultations are free of charge, free of obligation, and completely confidential. The lawyers at Lalande & Company are flexible and can arrange a consultation at a time that is convenient to you and your family—and we are happy to answer any questions you have.