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Losing a loved one is the most painfully traumatic experience you are likely to ever go through.  This statement is even more true if the circumstances surrounding your loved one’s demise were anything other than natural causes associated with old age. 

For instance, if you have lost a loved one due to the reckless actions of a drunk driver, especially if you were in the car with your special person as they died, the trauma you experience can last a lifetime.  Your loved one may have provided a substantial amount of income to help provide for your family, they are now no longer there, your bills are piling up, and you have to also seek therapeutic services to cope with the trauma you have endured.

This is a horrible story that no person should ever have to live through, but it happens, and if it happens to you, you may be wondering if there is any sort of recourse towards the party that shattered your world.  The silver lining is, there is indeed.  It is a small comfort to know that you may be able to receive financial compensation for your pain, but it is something.

Montana has a wrongful death action statute located in Mont. Code Ann. 27-1-515.  It states:

“When injuries to and the death of one person are caused by the wrongful act or neglect of another, the personal representative of the decedent’s estate may maintain an action for damages against the person causing the death or, if the person is employed by another person who is responsible for the causing person’s conduct, then also against the other responsible person.”

MCA 27-1-513 states that the above cause of action, if litigated successfully, is entitled to such damages that may be given towards all circumstances of the case (not just compensatory) as may be just.

So what does this mean for you?  If you are the representative of your loved one’s estate, and you believe you may have a cause of action for a wrongful death claim, it is of the utmost importance to contact an experienced personal injury attorney prior to the statute of limitations expiring on any potential case you may have. 

As we have cautioned in previous postings, have your attorney filters on, make sure that the person you are entrusting your case with understands the pain you are going through and sees your for more than a potential dollar sign.  Your attorney should never be the cause of any additional pain.  You have been through enough already.  If you believe you might have a claim for wrongful death, please feel free to contact our office for a free consultation.  The attorneys at Bryan, diStefano & Mattingley, PLLP truly care about their clients and are experienced in dealing with litigating a matter during traumatic times.  Feel free to contact our office today.