Recover what your family deserves from a wrongful death

Wrongful death cases can have profound and lasting impacts. Let us guide you toward the compensation you deserve during this challenging journey.

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Candles after wrongful death

Common types of wrongful death claims

Automobile Wrecks

Nursing Home Neglect

Construction Accidents

Medical Malpractice

Dangerous Drugs

Workplace Accidents

Defective Medical Devices

The Whiting approach to
personal injury law

Jason Whiting Approach Personal Injury

Why having a trial mindset is important even if you don’t go to trial.

Settlements with insurance companies happen because they want to avoid the risk of a bigger verdict in court. 

Even if the plan is to settle out of court, approaching the claim or case by considering what might happen in court has great value. Evaluating your case this way means seeing the facts and circumstances through the lens of seven jurors listening to the evidence. 

Because of Jason Whiting’s experience as an insurance claims adjuster and defense attorney for insurance companies, he understands that processing your case facts with a trial mindset is the best way to provide sound counsel and help you achieve maximum compensation.

Important questions about wrongful death claims

Sure, if you value a quick, lowball settlement more than you value maximum fair compensation (and some people do). Based on Jason’s years of experience as a claims adjuster and insurance lawyer, he is confident that his help will net you more money than you otherwise would facing the insurance company alone. Why is that? Insurance adjusters settle personal injury claims to avoid the risk of an even bigger verdict in court if the case doesn’t settle. If you have no lawyer—the insurance company has no real risk. If you have a decent lawyer—they carry some risk. If you have a skilled trial lawyer like Jason—huge risk. Simple as that.

Wrongful death claims can only be filed by the personal representative of the deceased, usually a close family member. The beneficiaries of a wrongful death claim are defined by Va. Code §8.01-53 and often included a spouse, children, and other dependents.

Wrongful death claims require proving that the death was caused by someone else’s negligence, recklessness, or intentional actions. This involves demonstrating how the defendant’s actions directly led to the fatal incident. Gathering evidence and building a strong case to establish liability is a complex but vital aspect of these claims.

Wrongful death claims seek to compensate surviving family members and dependents for the financial and emotional losses resulting from the death of their loved one. Damages can cover medical expenses, funeral costs, lost financial support, loss of companionship, and more. Understanding the various types of damages that can be pursued and how they are calculated is essential to pursuing a fair and comprehensive claim.

Jason approaches cases by evaluating the facts as if they are going to court; however, you will only go to trial if you decide to – it is always your decision. Jason will make recommendations about whether to accept any settlement offers or file a lawsuit. He offers sound counsel, not pressure, because ultimately it’s your decision. More than 90% of wrongful death claims settle outside of court. Although, sometimes filing suit and litigating for a while is necessary to obtain maximum compensation from the insurance company.

Even if a wrongful death case settles out of court, Virginia law requires a Circuit Court judge to approve the settlement and disbursement.

Liability And Fault

Who can be held liable in a wrongful death claim? 

In a wrongful death claim, liability can be attributed to various parties depending on the circumstances. Responsible parties may include individuals, companies, or entities whose negligence, intentional actions, or omissions directly contributed to the victim’s death. Common liable parties can range from negligent drivers in fatal accidents to entities responsible for maintaining unsafe premises that led to a tragic incident.

How is liability determined in a fatal accident case involving negligence? 

Liability in a fatal accident case involving negligence is determined through a thorough investigation of the events leading to the death. This includes analyzing evidence, witness testimonies, expert opinions, and applicable laws. Establishing negligence requires showing that the responsible party breached a duty of care owed to the victim, resulting in their death. 

What role does proving causation play in establishing liability in a wrongful death claim? 

Proving causation is pivotal in establishing liability in a wrongful death claim. It involves demonstrating that the actions or negligence of the liable party were the direct cause of the victim’s death. This can be complex, requiring a detailed assessment of the sequence of events and how the responsible party’s actions led to the fatal outcome. Jason conducts thorough research and leverages his expertise as a former insurance claims adjuster to determine whether there is a clear link between the negligent behavior and the tragic result, ensuring a strong foundation for liability.

Insurance and coverage

Can insurance policies cover wrongful death claims? 

Yes, insurance policies can cover wrongful death claims in many situations. Depending on the circumstances, various types of insurance such as auto insurance, commercial liability insurance, and other liability insurance may provide coverage for wrongful death claims. These policies can help provide compensation to surviving family members for their loss and related expenses.

What types of insurance may come into play in a wrongful death case? 

Several types of insurance may come into play in a wrongful death case, including auto insurance, homeowner’s insurance, and liability insurance. For instance, if a fatal accident occurs due to a car crash, the at-fault driver’s auto insurance could potentially provide coverage. Jason’s comprehensive understanding of insurance policies and their application from his time as an insurance adjuster and insurance defense lawyer allows him to maximize the compensation available to your family.

How can insurance coverage impact the compensation available in a wrongful death claim? 

Insurance coverage can significantly impact the compensation available in a wrongful death claim. Adequate insurance coverage can provide financial support to surviving family members, helping cover funeral costs, lost financial support, and other related damages. Jason will thoroughly evaluate the insurance coverage of all liable parties and work diligently to determine if you have a quality claim.

Compensation and damages

What types of compensation can be sought in a wrongful death claim? 

In a wrongful death claim, various types of compensation can be sought to address the financial and emotional impact of the loss. Va. Code §8.01-52 enumerates the types of compensation to which you may be entitled, such as lost financial support, loss of companionship, emotional pain and suffering endured, and burial/funeral costs.

How are economic and non-economic damages calculated in wrongful death cases? 

Economic damages in wrongful death cases are calculated based on quantifiable financial losses, such as funeral expenses and the deceased’s potential earnings. Non-economic damages, which encompass emotional distress and loss of companionship, are more challenging to quantify. Our skilled legal team consults with experts and utilizes established methods to assign a fair value to both economic and non-economic damages.

What factors influence the amount of compensation awarded in a wrongful death claim? 

The amount of compensation awarded in a wrongful death claim is influenced by various factors. These can include the victim’s age, earning capacity, the circumstances leading to the death, the financial and emotional impact on surviving family members, and the applicable laws in your jurisdiction. Jason assesses all these factors to build a strong case for maximum compensation that accurately reflects the extent of your family’s loss.

Jason Whiting

“I understand how insurance adjusters work because I used to be one. I also represented insurance companies for many years. If you’ve been injured by a driver in southwest Virginia, you deserve a skilled trial lawyer to give you a powerful voice.”

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