The United States tops the countries with the highest number of coronavirus cases in the world with almost 4 million reported cases and over 143,000 deaths (as at 7/20/2020). Although efforts are being made by the authorities to combat the spread of the virus, it’s sad that daily new cases, recently, are shooting higher at unprecedented rates.
What’s even more disturbing is that there are many people who lost their lives due to exposure to the virus at places such as nursing homes and places of work where adequate safety conditions were missing. If you have proof that your loved one’s death from Covid-19 was due to willful misconduct or negligence of another person or group, then you may have grounds to file for a wrongful death lawsuit.
Who can Sue for Negligence or Wrongful Death from Coronavirus?
- You can sue for negligence or wrongful death from coronavirus if you or your loved one had been exposed to the virus due to negligent conduct of another person.
- Cases relating to negligence or wrongful death fall under tort law. Tort law in the Constitution of the United States exists to redress damages caused by an individual by the conduct of another party that falls below a standard of care and carefulness defined by the civil courts.
- You can enforce your right to sue for negligence and pursue compensation if you can, for all intents and purposes, prove that someone or an entity negligently exposed you to coronavirus.
Some months ago, a Florida couple filed a lawsuit against a cruise ship company. The couple were passengers on the Grand Princess Cruise ship docked outside of Oakland. Unknown to them and other passengers, the ship had been infected by two passengers who came down with symptoms of Covid-19 during its previous voyage.
The claimants stated that the Princess Cruise Lines were aware of the potential risk of contracting the virus on their cruise lines and still decided to continue with business in total disregard for public health concern the previous outbreak portended. They therefore filed a lawsuit for $1M alleging the cruise company for withholding such crucial information from the passengers.
- Likewise, Glenhaven Nursing Home in Glendale took heavy flak from a family who alleged the healthcare of negligence and willful misconduct following the death of their loved one who was a septuagenarian. Ricardo Saldana, 77, until his death due to coronavirus was living at the nursing home where he was said to have contracted the virus.
The family claimed the deceased who recently recovered from a stroke would have stayed healthy if the facility had taken the outbreak seriously. They alleged that Glenhaven allowed a nurse who has been exposed to the coronavirus at another facility to come in contact with patients at their facility without sharing the information with any staff or any of the residents.
Who can you Sue against Negligence or Wrongful Death?
- The person or entity depends on the circumstances surrounding your case, and your ability to prove the point of infection. Like Ricardo’s family, you can sue a healthcare facility if you can prove that their negligence was responsible for the loss of your loved one. You should consider contacting an experienced personal injury lawyer to know your options.
How Easy is it to Prove liability about Exposure to Coronavirus?
- It’s one thing to allege, but another thing entirely to have the ability to prove that the responsible party is actually liable. In some cases, it can be more difficult to prove exactly where a victim contracted the virus.
- In the case against Walmart, for example, it was alleged that a worker who died as a result of coronavirus contracted the virus at work. The claimants alleged inadequate safety conditions including the store’s failure to sanitize properly. It was also said that the business failed to provide necessary protective equipment and warn employees of the risk of the disease transmission.
Responding to the allegation, the store contends that they indeed took all the required precautions. Amid the blame game, the biggest task before the court and the lawyers representing parties is to prove or disprove that the deceased contracted the virus at work. Such a case can be extremely challenging and problematic for many young lawyers given the novelty of the pandemic
Although it is true that proving the point of infection could be arduous, it doesn’t, however, mean that you cannot file for a wrongful death lawsuit and win the case. You only need an experienced personal injury lawyer who can successfully prove liability beyond reasonable doubt.
Given how tragic death of loved ones could be, and the consequent financial and emotional damages especially if the deceased was the breadwinner of their family, it’s important to file a lawsuit and pursue compensation that will help sustain the family.