What is Considered Wrongful Death in Indiana?

Death can sadly occur in various situations, such as when someone drives drunk, prescribes the wrong medication, or designs a flawed product. 

When negligence results in fatal accidents, it’s important to understand your legal rights and options to claim compensation, but sometimes it’s not easy to understand what is considered wrongful death and what is not.

In Indiana, wrongful death is defined as a death that is caused by the wrongful act or omission of another person or entity, and that would have entitled the deceased person to file a personal injury claim if they had survived (Indiana Code 34-23-1-1).

Examples of wrongful death cases may include, but are not limited to:

Car accidents caused by negligent or reckless driving

The Indiana government reported that in 2019, there were 1,000 fatalities in motor vehicle crashes in Indiana, with many of them being caused by negligent or reckless driving. 

If your loved one was killed in a car accident due to another driver’s negligence, our attorneys can help you understand your legal rights and pursue a wrongful death claim.

Medical malpractice resulting in death

When a healthcare provider fails to meet the appropriate standard of care, and it results in harm or even death to a patient, it can be a painful and confusing time for the family left behind. Common malpractice situations include: 

  • Misdiagnosis
  • Medication errors, such as incorrect dosage or wrong medication administered
  • Surgical errors
  • Anesthesia errors
  • Use of defective medical devices
  • Birth injuries resulting in death
  • Failure to properly monitor a patient’s condition
  • Infections acquired in a healthcare setting
  • Failure to timely and appropriately respond to a patient’s deteriorating condition
  • Inadequate communication among healthcare providers
  • Prescription errors

Workplace accidents leading to fatal injuries

In Indiana, workplace accidents are unfortunately not uncommon, and they can result in serious injuries or fatalities. 

According to the Indiana Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries report, there were 158 workplace fatalities in Indiana in 2020. We know these accidents can often be devastating and impact your capability to find work in the future. 

What Can a Lawyer Do for You if You Lost a Loved One Due to Wrongful Actions

Losing someone you care about can leave you feeling overwhelmed and uncertain about what steps to take next. But hiring a Fort Wayen wrongful death lawyer can provide you with the guidance and support you need during this difficult time. 

Here are some ways in which a skilled attorney can assist you:

1. Investigate the circumstances of the wrongful death

An attorney can conduct a thorough investigation to determine the cause of your loved one’s death and identify the parties responsible. 

This may involve reviewing police reports, medical records, workplace safety records, and other relevant documents.

2. Navigate the legal process

Wrongful death cases in Indiana can be complex, involving legal statutes, rules of evidence, and court procedures. 

A legal team with experience handling wrongful death cases can navigate the legal process on your behalf, ensuring that all deadlines are met, documents are filed correctly, and arguments are presented effectively in court

Our personal injury attorneys in Fort Wayne have a deep understanding of Indiana statutes related to wrongful death and can use their expertise to advocate for your rights.

3. Seek compensation for your loss

In a wrongful death case, you may be entitled to various types of damages to compensate you for your loss. This may include economic damages, such as medical expenses, funeral costs, lost wages, and loss of future earnings, as well as non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, loss of companionship, and emotional distress. 

We can help you understand the types of damages that may be available in your case and work diligently to maximize

Understanding How to File a Wrongful Death Suit in Fort Wayne

If you have suffered from wrongful death, it is important to understand the legal process for filing a wrongful death suit. Here are the key rules and steps to follow:

Statute of Limitations

This statute sets a deadline by which the lawsuit must be filed, and if this deadline is missed, you may lose your right to pursue a claim. 

In Indiana, the statute of limitations for wrongful death cases is generally two years from the date of the person’s death (Indiana Code 34-23-1-1). 

However, there are exceptions and nuances to this rule, and it is essential to consult with an experienced wrongful death attorney to ensure that your claim is filed within the appropriate time frame.

Gathering evidence and building a case

To file a successful wrongful death claim, you will need to gather evidence that supports your case. 

This may include police reports, medical records, witness statements, expert opinions, and other relevant documentation. 

That’s why working with a specialized wrongful death attorney can be invaluable in this process, as they have the knowledge and resources to conduct a thorough investigation and build a strong case on your behalf.

Negotiating or litigating the claim

After filing the wrongful death lawsuit, the next step is typically to engage in negotiations with the responsible parties or their insurance companies to settle. 

This may involve back-and-forth negotiations to determine an appropriate amount of compensation for your damages. If a fair settlement cannot be reached, your attorney may need to take your case to court and litigate the claim. 

Damages You Can Demand

In a wrongful death case, there are various types of damages that you may be entitled to seek as compensation for your loss. 

These damages are intended to compensate you for the economic and non-economic losses you have suffered as a result of your loved one’s wrongful death. Here are some common types of damages that may be available in a wrongful death case:

Economic damages

Economic damages are meant to compensate for the financial losses incurred as a result of wrongful death. 

These may include the costs of medical treatment and care that the deceased person received as a result of the wrongful act or omission leading to their death, including hospital bills, medication costs, and rehabilitation expenses.

Non-economic damages

Non-economic damages, on the other hand, are intended to compensate for intangible losses that cannot be easily quantified in monetary terms. These may include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of companionship and consortium: This refers to the loss of love, companionship, guidance, and support that the surviving family members have suffered due to the wrongful death of their loved one.
  • Loss of household services: 


At Christie Farrell Lee & Bell law firm, we are dedicated to helping families in Fort Wayne, Indiana, who have lost loved ones due to wrongful death. Our team of personal injury attorneys will provide you with personalized legal representation, guiding you through the entire process of filing a wrongful death suit and advocating for your rights at every step. 

We will work to ensure that you receive the maximum compensation possible under Indiana law while providing you with the compassionate support and guidance you need during this challenging time.

If you have lost a loved one due to wrongful death, do not hesitate to contact us for a free consultation. We are here to listen to your story, answer your questions, and provide you with the skilled legal representation you deserve.

Our lawyers that handle these types of cases