Wrongful Death

When a person is killed through the negligence of a company or person, the family of the decedent has a right to recover the full value of life of the person who was killed. Georgia recognizes that a person's life has value and considers that fair compensation for a death is the value of a person's life not only includes the decedent's earnings and the years his earnings would continue but also the decedent's love of life and what his life meant to him.

Surviving family members have a right to the value of life. Usually suit must be filed to collect the money due the family

A few years ago, we represented the children of a pedestrian that was struck by a car shortly after daybreak. The death occurred on a rural highway outside Toccoa, Ga. The driver that struck the pedestrian called the police and reported that the pedestrian ran out into the road directly in front of the car. The driver claimed that the pedestrian was running from the driver's left to the driver's right. There were no other witnesses just the driver who was alive and the pedestrian who was dead.

We were hired by the mother of the pedestrian's 3 children. The couple was divorced, but the father was obligated to pay child support so his death meant that the mom would have to support the children on her own. She did not know how the pedestrian had been killed but did not believe that her ex-husband would just run out in front of a car.

Our investigation located a witness. The witness was not listed on the police report. The driver and the witness would usually carpool to work together, but on the day of the death the driver had an appointment so she took her own car to work. The witness took her own car on the day of the death and had left for work only a very few minutes before the driver that struck the pedestrian. The witness testified that she saw the pedestrian close to the location where he was hit and that he was just walking along the side of the road. The pedestrian was on the right side of the road near where he was struck.

Although the driver who struck the pedestrian had claimed that the pedestrian had crossed the road, the witness last saw the pedestrian on the right side of the road which made it very unlikely that he was crossing the road as claimed by the driver. Since the witness last saw the pedestrian walking on the side of the road where the driver struck him and the witness was only a few minutes ahead of the driver at fault. The driver's story only works if the pedestrian crossed the road twice. We collected the insurance money for the mom.