What is a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in New Hampshire?

A wrongful death lawsuit in New Hampshire is filed when someone dies because of the careless actions of another person or a business. People with a legal interest can sue the individuals or companies that caused the death and receive damages for their loss.

Wrongful death claims are filed in New Hampshire Civil Court because they are considered civil actions. It is possible to have wrongful death claims filed while criminal charges are pending. The decision for a wrongful death case is based on the preponderance of the evidence.

All types of incidents can lead to wrongful deaths. Some of those include accidents involving vehicles. Others include accidents that happen on property or workplaces.

New Hampshire does not have restrictive laws about who can file wrongful death lawsuits when compared to other states. Anyone with a legal interest in the deceased’s estate may file a claim, not just family members or an estate administrator.

Winning the Case

To win a wrongful death case in New Hampshire, the person bringing the claim must prove either negligence or strict liability. One good indicator is what would have happened if the deceased person lived. If they could have brought a personal injury case, then there’s a good possibility a wrongful death claim would be successful.

One way to prove a wrongful death is by providing evidence that the person or company that caused the death did so because they were negligent. Another way to win is to prove strict liability. For example, if a product was defective and caused death, then that could be enough to win a claim.

In New Hampshire, you can bring a wrongful death claim up to six years after someone has died for most types of cases. There are also some types of cases where filing deadlines are shorter.

Damages for Wrongful Death Claims in New Hampshire

Damages for wrongful death claims are rewarded based on the facts of the case. Many types of damages are considered. Those include medical expenses, pain and suffering, compensation for lost pay over a lifetime, funerals, and burial costs.

Spouses may receive damages for other types of losses. Those include the loss of comfort, companionship and guidance. Children under 18 can also receive damages for the loss of a family member. State law limits the amount to $150,000.