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Smith & Griffith, LLP Smith & Griffith, LLP
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Wrongful Death

Anderson Wrongful Death Lawyers

 Smith & Griffith, LLP is built upon more than 25 years of dedicated legal service to the Anderson community and beyond. Our deep-rooted connection to this area and its people drives us to offer not just legal representation, but compassionate and understanding guidance to those facing the difficult loss of a loved one due to wrongful death. 

We understand the emotional and financial turmoil such a loss can create, which is why our team, seasoned by decades of experience, approaches each case with the utmost sensitivity and determination.

The wrongful death lawyers in our Anderson office serve the entire county, all of Pickens and Oconee counties, and throughout South Carolina. Call (864) 477-7395 today.

Understanding Wrongful Death Claims

A key distinction to grasp about wrongful death claims is that they operate within the civil legal system, separate from criminal proceedings. 

Criminal charges are pursued by the District Attorney on behalf of the public, with the aim of determining guilt and assigning penalties. Wrongful death claims serve a different purpose. It is not the state, but rather the family of the deceased bringing the legal action. Unlike a criminal trial, where a defendant faces the prospect of jail, a wrongful death lawsuit focuses on monetary compensation for the plaintiffs. 

Filing a Wrongful Death Claim in South Carolina

South Carolina law stipulates that wrongful death claims must be lodged by the individual appointed as the executor of the deceased’s estate. Executors are typically designated in the deceased’s will. In instances where the deceased did not leave a will, a court can appoint an executor.

Although it is the executor’s responsibility to file the wrongful death lawsuit, any compensation awarded from the lawsuit is intended for the deceased’s surviving family members. 

Beneficiaries eligible to receive wrongful death compensation may include:

  • The spouse and children of the deceased.
  • The parents of the deceased, in cases where the deceased was unmarried and had no children.
  • The heirs of the deceased, should there be no surviving parents, children, or spouse.

Compensation in Wrongful Death Claims

In wrongful death claims, the aim is to seek financial redress for losses experienced by the deceased’s loved ones. This can start with the costs associated with medical care and funeral services. 

The long-term aspects of a wrongful death settlement should account for factors like these: 

  • Earnings loss: The abrupt discontinuation of the deceased’s earnings, encompassing salary, wages, or profits from self-employment, significantly impacts the family’s financial well-being.
  • Financial assets: The untimely death may also mean a loss of income from investments, savings, and other financial assets that would have contributed to the family’s economic security and future stability.
  • Support obligations: Families, especially children and a custodial parent who were reliant on the deceased for child support or alimony, may find themselves financially strained and need to be compensated through a wrongful death settlement. 
  • Companionship: While an intangible factor, a settlement should still seek to compensate family members for the loss of the deceased’s love and friendship. 

Compassionate Counsel in Difficult Times

In the wake of a loss as profound as that caused by wrongful death, the need for genuine, personalized legal counsel is vital At Smith & Griffith, LLP, we understand that behind every case number is a grieving family, a person with a name, a story, and a life that was unjustly cut short. The commitment of our Anderson wrongful death attorneys goes beyond the courtroom – it’s about providing personal representation that acknowledges the individuality and dignity of each client we serve.

Call (864) 477-7395 today or contact us online to set up a free consultation.

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