122 N. McDowell St. Charlotte, NC 28204


Charlotte Wrongful Death Lawyer

Losing a close family member forever alters the lives of the surviving family members. When the death of a loved one is caused by someone else’s negligence or by an intentional act, this can make the loss even more tragic and painful.

Whether the loved one is a parent, spouse, child, or all of the above, wrongful death causes many severe intangible losses. Your loved one is no longer there to provide their love, advice, and guidance, and if the emotional pain weren’t enough, wrongful death can bring about real economic hardship for loved ones such as medical, funeral, and burial expenses. The loss of the deceased person’s wages, benefits, and other material contributions to the household can be a major impact on the family as well.

You should not have to bear these costs alone. North Carolina laws allow surviving family members or other personal representatives of the deceased person to seek compensation via a wrongful death claim.

The dedicated legal team at Myers Law Firm understands that wrongful death is among the most devastating things that can happen to a family. If your loved one’s death was caused by someone else’s negligence, an experienced wrongful death attorney can help you fight for justice and compensation for your losses.

You Deserve Compensation for Wrongful Death

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In North Carolina, personal representatives who bring a wrongful death claim can pursue financial compensation for:

  • The cost of medical care incurred prior to the person’s death as a result of the wrongful acts that led to the death.
  • Reasonable funeral expenses
  • The reasonably-expected income that the deceased person would have earned over his or her expected lifetime
  • The value of other benefits that the deceased person would have earned, such as health or retirement benefits
  • The value of various services that the decedent would have provided to the survivors, such as household services, tutoring, or care-taking
  • The value of the companionship, comfort, and advice that the deceased person would have provided

In cases where a person experienced conscious pain and suffering prior to his or her death, the personal representatives can also seek compensation for the deceased person’s pain and suffering. In addition, if the conduct that caused a wrongful death was especially reckless — such as driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs — a defendant may be required to pay additional “punitive damages,” which serve as a punishment and a warning to others who might engage in similar conduct.

North Carolina Wrongful Death FAQs

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in North Carolina?

In North Carolina, all wrongful death cases must be filed by the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate. This person is sometimes called the “executor.” If your loved one had a will, it probably designated a personal representative. If not, the court will assign one.

How Are Wrongful Death Benefits Distributed in North Carolina?

Under state law, all wrongful death settlements are divided according to North Carolina’s intestate succession law (see N.C.G.S. § 29).

In simple terms, this means that settlement funds are divided to eligible beneficiaries according to the same rules used to determine inheritance when the deceased person did not leave a will. This means wrongful death settlements are not determined by your loved one’s will even if they had one, and are not considered as a asset of the deceased person’s estate.

North Carolina’s inheritance rules can be somewhat complicated. But generally speaking, we can talk about two fairly common scenarios.

If the wrongful death victim left a spouse and/or children:

If the deceased person had a surviving spouse and/or children (or descendants via one or more previously deceased children), these family members will split the wrongful death settlement according to the proportions set in N.C.G.S. § 29.

Note that this means that, as long as your loved one was married and/or left at least one living descendant, no other family members will be considered eligible beneficiaries. Note also that eligible children can be biological or adopted, but stepchildren (unless formally adopted) are not eligible.

If the wrongful death victim did not have a spouse or children:

If your loved one did not have a spouse or descendants (for example, if they were a minor child), the wrongful death settlement would go to the parents. If there are also no surviving parents, the settlement would go to next of kin as determined by state law (again, N.C.G.S. § 29).

How Long Do I Have to File a Wrongful Death Claim in North Carolina?

North Carolina has a two-year statute of limitations for wrongful death claims. In other words, if you wish to pursue legal recourse for a wrongful death, then you must do so within two years of the date of death.

Some exceptions do exist, but the passage of time can also erase or cloud crucial evidence that could prove your case — so please contact us right away.

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An Experienced Wrongful Death Lawyer Can Make All the Difference

A wrongful death lawsuit can be an emotionally draining experience—not to mention legally challenging.

In order to obtain compensation, you’ll need to prove that someone else caused the victim’s death. That often requires substantial evidence, some of which might not last for very long after the initial incident.

Surviving family members in North Carolina must also contend with our state’s contributory negligence laws. In this harsh system, if a jury believes your loved one was even slightly responsible for what happened to them—even 1 percent—then the family members are not entitled to any compensation whatsoever.

It’s not fair or reasonable to expect families to handle these complex, difficult issues on their own, especially during a time of intense grief. When you work with our Charlotte wrongful death attorneys, we’ll take over this difficult, taxing work so you can focus on spending time with your loved ones and rebuilding your life as best as possible.

Contact Myers Law Firm in Charlotte, North Carolina

If someone you love was killed as a result of someone else’s negligent or reckless actions, or as a result of using a defective product, you should discuss your situation with the Charlotte wrongful death lawyers at Myers Law Firm as soon as possible. In every case related to a wrongful death, our initial consultation is free.

Our wrongful death attorneys offer decades of cumulative experience in dealing with insurance companies as well as litigating wrongful death lawsuits in court. We pride ourselves on staying in touch with our clients and always keeping their needs in mind as we work aggressively to protect their interests.

To schedule your free consultation, please call our Charlotte office toll-free at 1-888-376-ATTY (2889) or fill out and submit our online contact form. We will follow up and get in touch with you as soon as possible.

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