Frequently Asked Questions

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  • Do beneficiaries need to be named in a wrongful death lawsuit?

    Only the plaintiff and the person who died must be named in a wrongful death insurance claim or civil lawsuit.

    Technically, the person named as the plaintiff is acting in place of the deceased individual and on behalf of the estate of the man, woman or child who died. How an insurance company wrongful death settlement or jury award is divided up is a matter for the estate to determine.

    While discussing with a Virginia wrongful death attorney how an insurance claim or civil lawsuit relates to a will or trust can be helpful, it is not necessary to include details about the distribution of funds in insurance paperwork or court filings.


  • Can someone other than a parent file a wrongful death claim on behalf of a child?

    A mother, father or legal guardian usually acts on behalf of a deceased child when it comes to handling a wrongful death insurance claim or civil lawsuit. This situation is not written into law, however.

    The family or the child’s estate can designate a legal executor to handle the case. Consulting with a Virginia wrongful death attorney before taking the option of having someone other than a parent or guardian represent the child will ensure that legal challenges to the arrangement do not block recovery of compensation and damages from the person or organization that caused the death.


  • How do I know if I have a wrongful death case in Virginia?

    Negligence, recklessness or intent on the part of the person or organization that is responsible for a person’s death justifies filing a wrongful death insurance claim or civil lawsuit. You can take legal action for a wrongful death if you are authorized to act on behalf of the estate of the person who died.

    As Virginia wrongful death attorneys, my colleagues and I concentrate on cases involving negligence, such as medical errors or car crashes, and from recklessness, such as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

    A person authorized to act on behalf of a wrongful death victim’s estate can be a parent, brother, sister, other family member, executor or trustee.


  • What if I am treated for my personal injuries by a non-MD?

    The auto insurance industry is biased in the US in favor of mainstream, Western treatments by doctors, hospitals and medical clinics. It tends to give less weight to treatments provided by physical therapists, chiropractors, acupuncturists and other non-traditional medical providers. You may receive compensation for medical costs incurred from non-traditional treatments, but the multiplier used in the damages formula will usually be less. 

  • Are all medical services treated the same by insurance companies?

    No. The nature and duration of medical treatments and services can affect how the auto insurance company perceives it, as can the type of medical professional and the facility offering the services. 

  • What are medical special damages?

    Medical special damages are the amount you spend on medical bills from having your accident injuries diagnosed and treated. Medical damages are a part of the personal injuries damages formula that insurance companies use to determine your total damages

  • What evidence can I provide of a traumatic brain injury?

    The CT scan and MRI imaging may be normal, and perhaps your Glasgow Coma Score was a 15 after the accident, which indicates normal brain function. These facts could discourage some attorneys from filing a claim. But often times, testimony from a spouse, friends and other family can be used to provide strong evidence of a brain injury. 

  • What aspects of my life can the insurance company examine if I file a TBI claim?

    The insurance company will probably do a review of your educational history, employment, medical records and personal life. They may attempt to blame your brain injury on a medical problem or other condition not related to the accident. They also may search your social media profiles for proof that you are not seriously injured. 

  • If I have a traumatic brain injury and file suit, what will the other insurance company do?

    The insurance company may be skeptical. Even if you have a concussion, you could have a normal CT scan and MRI imaging. A good TBI attorney may need to push your case aggressively to get results.

  • Can I sue the bar in Virginia that served the drunk driver who injured me?

    Virginia is one of the few states that does not have a Dram Shop law, so you cannot sue the establishment that may have served the drunk driver who injured you. But you can still recover compensation for your losses by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the driver.