Published on:

Court Decides Wrongful Death Case

A man was killed in a motor car accident and his only asset is the cause of legal action for wrongful death. The attorneys for the administrators have received an offer of $12,500 in settlement of that claim. The two car accident in which the man was killed gave rise to suits by three different complainants and the $12,500 offer represents one-third of entire policy limits of the two opponent’s insurance coverage.

The administrators’ petition asks that the entire amount, after payment of attorneys’ fees and debts and expenses be paid to the man’s mother and father. However, the appointed guardian of the man’s out-of-wedlock son contends that his ward is entitled to the full amount of the recovery. The department of social services entered a claim against the estate in the amount of $6600 for the support of the man’s out-of-wedlock child. A Suffolk County Personal Injury Lawyer said the claims by the department of social services for payments made to support the child cannot be satisfied from the funds recovered in a wrongful death proceeding. However, the only assets of the estate is the wrongful death proceeds, the department of social services has withdrawn its charges. The recovery for pain and suffering belong to the man, his estate and recovery for wrongful death do not become estate assets, but bound to the benefit of those who lose financial support by the wrongful death. By a written agreement with the department of social services the man acknowledged paternity of his son. No evidence of financial injury on the part of the parents of the deceased man was introduced.

After all expenses, attorney’s fees and guardian fees there will be only approximately $6,000 left of the wrongful death settlement. The entire net amount is to be given to man’s out-of-wedlock child, as the only heir for the wrongful death settlement which suffered financial injury because of his father’s death.

Finally, arose at the trial the problem of custody of the out-of-wedlock child. The paternal grandfather of the child strongly urged that the child be awarded to his custody to live with him. The child had been voluntarily given by the mother into the custody of the department of social services and for boarding custody and care with one of the social welfare agency. The mother of the child was present in the courtroom but not seeking custody. A Westchester County Personal Injury Lawyer said the department of social services strongly opposed the paternal grandfather’s custody request . Under the said situation, the application for custody by the paternal grandfather is denied with leave for him to renew his application in the family court proceeding. In that court, if permanent neglect should be found for the purpose of separating the child from his mother’s rights, the social work and probation services available to the family court would better serve the interests of the child. A New York Injury Lawyer said the paternal grandfather’s home can be considered with the help of probation or foster care in an adoptive home may become available and may appear preferable to boarding home care. The custody of the child is, therefore, left temporarily on the mother’s voluntary consent without change, and subject to further proceedings in a court of competent authority.

The conditional fee of the attorney who succeeded in recovering $12,500 for wrongful death by settlement is limited to $3500 plus $66 disbursements, the guardian claim for $1,000 through final pronouncement is moderate in view of the effort and success he has, with the help of his attorney, achieved for his charges and the travel expenses of the administrators are limited and allowed to the extent of $150 for each. The entire net estate after the said charges shall be deposited for the benefit of the infant child of the man.

It is very hard to accept when we lose someone important. However, it is harder for a family member especially for a child to lose a parent. Lawyers are skillful in handling cases and defending clients in need. If you suffered from malpractice of health care providers and obtain recurring injuries, inquire at Stephen Bilkis & Associates.

Contact Information