Losing a loved one is an extremely challenging experience, particularly when it happens due to the negligence or misconduct of another party. In such tragic circumstances, understanding who is eligible to file a wrongful death claim in South Carolina becomes crucial. If you’ve lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligence, seeking guidance from a knowledgeable Charleston wrongful death attorney like Lesemann & Associates can provide the clarity and support you need.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?

In South Carolina, the laws governing wrongful death claims are outlined in the South Carolina Code of Laws, Title 15, Chapter 51, known as the "South Carolina Wrongful Death Act." According to this statute, a wrongful death claim may be brought forth by the personal representative of the deceased person's estate or by the surviving family members who have suffered losses as a result of the death.

Personal Representative of the Estate

The personal representative, also known as the executor or administrator, is typically named in the deceased person's will or appointed by the court. This individual acts on behalf of the deceased person's estate and is responsible for managing the legal affairs, including bringing legal action. If the deceased did not appoint a personal representative or if the appointed individual is unable or unwilling to serve, the court may appoint someone to act in this capacity.

Surviving Family Members

In addition to the personal representative, certain surviving family members are also eligible to file a wrongful death claim in South Carolina. These may include:

  • Spouse: A surviving spouse has the first right to bring a wrongful death claim in South Carolina.
  • Children: If there is no surviving spouse, the deceased person's children may bring the claim.
  • Parents: In cases where the deceased person was unmarried and had no children, the parents may have the right to file a wrongful death claim.
  • Heirs: If there are no surviving spouses, children, or parents, other heirs of the deceased person's estate may have the right to bring a wrongful death claim.

It's important to note that South Carolina law prioritizes the surviving spouse's right to file a wrongful death claim over other family members. If there is a surviving spouse, they must formally waive their right to bring the claim before other eligible family members can proceed.

Seeking Legal Guidance

Navigating the legal requirements and complexities surrounding wrongful death claims in South Carolina can be overwhelming, especially when dealing with the emotional aftermath of losing a loved one. That's where the skill of a compassionate Charleston wrongful death attorney from Lesemann & Associates can make a difference.

At Lesemann & Associates, we understand the challenges you're facing, and we're here to provide you with the guidance, support, and advocacy you need during this difficult time. Our dedicated legal team has the experience and resources to help you pursue justice and fair compensation for your losses.

Contact Lesemann & Associates Today

Understanding the eligibility criteria for filing a wrongful death claim in South Carolina is essential for those seeking justice and compensation after the loss of a loved one. With the guidance of a reputable Charleston wrongful death attorney, you can navigate these legal matters with confidence and peace of mind.

If you have questions about who is eligible to file a wrongful death claim in South Carolina or if you need assistance with your case, reach out to us for a free consultation.