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Time considerations in a wrongful death lawsuit

On Behalf of | Mar 28, 2022 | Personal Injury |

Losing a loved one is never an easy experience, and this is never more true than when their death is caused by someone else’s negligence. With all of the pain and frustration you’ll experience, it can be hard to make decisions. But if a wrongful death lawsuit is something you’re considering, it’s important not to wait too long.

Legal time limits

Every person owes everyone else a duty to act reasonably at all times, such as while driving a motor vehicle. When they fail in that duty and their actions result in the death of a loved one, they are legally negligent. Georgia gives surviving spouses and children the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit in these circumstances.

But at the same time Georgia gives survivors the right, they also put a time limit on exercising that right. This is known as the statute of limitations – for wrongful death lawsuits, Georgia sets the statute of limitations at two years. Though there are some exceptions, if the survivor does not file the lawsuit within two years of the loved one’s death, they lose the right forever.

Other time considerations

In addition to the legal time limit, there are also practical considerations. The success of a wrongful death lawsuit depends upon evidence. To collect that evidence, an investigation must be done – witnesses need to be interviewed and documents must be collected. As time passes, memories fade and evidence can grow stale, potentially damaging the effectiveness of a wrongful death case. Although it can be difficult to take action after someone’s death, doing so gives you the best chance to hold the negligent party accountable and to honor the memory of your loved one.