You may be surprised to read this in a post written by lawyers who focus on personal injury and wrongful death claims, but a wrongful death claim is NOT for everyone. It will require a commitment of both time and energy – probably yours – to bring a wrongful death lawsuit.
We write “probably yours,” because it is the “personal representative” who is responsible for interacting with the lawyer, performing specific functions, and fulfilling certain requirements. If you are reading this because a loved one has died, there is a good chance that you will end up being the personal representative, but it is not a sure thing. See Chapter 3 in your free copy of Oregon Wrongful Death Laws for more about what it means to be a personal representative.
If you do end up being the personal representative, your duties would include:
- Choosing a lawyer
- Meeting with the lawyer
- Discussing both the life and the death of your loved one with your lawyer
- Sometimes being involved (to your level of comfort) in strategic discussions with your lawyer
- Probably having your deposition (statement) taken
- Providing information to the other side as required by law
- Discussing settlement amounts with your lawyer
- Making the final decision of whether or not to accept a settlement offer
- Possibly going to trial