Wrongful Death

When a person dies as a result of negligence, Maryland law permits two causes of action. First, the Personal Representative of the estate of the deceased person can file a Survivorship Action to collect the damages that the deceased person could have recovered if he or she had survived. Any monies collected by the estate in the Survivorship Action would pass down to the heirs as provided in the Will or, in the absence of a Will, as provided by state law.

Second, the surviving family members can file a Wrongful Death Action to collect the damages that they have suffered in their own right as a result of losing their loved one. Not all family members are eligible to pursue a Wrongful Death Claim. The Wrongful Death statute identifies those family members who are permitted to bring a claim, but generally speaking, parents, children and spouses qualify as wrongful death beneficiaries.

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