Get justice for the loss of your loved one from the best wrongful death lawyers in Charleston, West Virginia.

Did You Lose a Loved One in an Accident?

If you have lost someone you care about because of someone else’s negligence, we want to help you get justice.

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Wrongful death claims arise when someone’s negligent, reckless, or intentional actions cause the death of another person. These claims can involve a wide range of incidents, including car accidents, medical malpractice, defective products, workplace accidents, and more. The purpose of a wrongful death claim is to provide compensation for the damages caused by the loss of a loved one, such as medical expenses, funeral costs, lost income, loss of companionship, and emotional distress.

Our team will support you throughout the entire process of a wrongful death claim. We understand the emotional toll of losing a loved one and are committed to handling every aspect of your case with empathy, care, and expertise. We will work tirelessly to investigate the circumstances of your loved one’s death, gather evidence, and build a strong case on your behalf.

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Getting Help Is Quick & Easy

We know that dealing with legal matters can be stressful, which is why we’ve made our process as quick and easy as possible. Whether you prefer to contact us by phone or through our website, we’re ready to listen to you and provide you with the guidance you need to move forward.

Bringing Justice to Your Case

We’re committed to fighting for justice for our clients. Our team of experienced attorneys will work tirelessly to build a strong case so that your voice is heard. We’ll stand by your side every step of the way and fight for the outcome you deserve.

Only Pay If We Win

Everyone should have access to quality legal representation, regardless of their financial situation. That’s why we work on a contingency fee basis, which means that you only pay us if we win your case. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain by working with our team of dedicated attorneys!


We’re Here for You in This Difficult Time

Losing a loved one is one of the most difficult experiences anyone can face. It is especially devastating when the death was caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing. When a loved one dies due to the actions of another, it can feel overwhelming, confusing, and unfair. In these situations, a wrongful death claim may be necessary to hold the responsible parties accountable and to seek compensation for the damages incurred.

At Stewart Bell, PLLC, we understand how challenging it is to navigate the legal process of a wrongful death claim while dealing with grief and loss. That’s why our compassionate and experienced attorneys are dedicated to helping our clients obtain justice and fair compensation.

If you have lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligence, please don’t hesitate to contact us today for a free consultation. We are here to help.

Do I Have A Wrongful Death Claim?

In West Virginia, only the personal representative of the deceased’s estate can file a wrongful death claim, but surviving family members will receive compensation if damages are awarded. This includes the spouse, children (including stepchildren and adopted children), parents, siblings, and any financially dependent family members.

If none of these individuals survive, damages will be distributed according to the deceased’s will or according to West Virginia’s inheritance laws.

Common causes for wrongful death claims include the following:

  • Car accidents
  • Medical malpractice
  • Motorcycle accidents
  • Nursing home abuse or negligence
  • On-the-job accidents
  • Slips, trips, and falls
  • Trucking accidents

The family and legal representatives of the deceased must prove negligence or intentional wrongdoing to establish a wrongful death claim. The party filing the claim must also prove that the deceased’s passing has caused compensatory damages. This is common when the deceased was responsible for all or a portion of the household income.

Depending upon the circumstances that led to the fatal injuries, there may be multiple parties that could be held liable. There is a wide range of potential injuries that could lead to wrongful death, and consequently, a variety of possible negligent parties. Some examples include those below:

  • Designers of a dangerous road
  • Drunk drivers or the establishments that served them
  • Homeowners and business owners
  • Medical personnel
  • Municipalities responsible for road and sidewalk maintenance
  • Reckless drivers
  • Trucking companies

Reeling After an Unexpected Loss?

Every death is tragic to someone, but the loss of a loved one too soon can hurt in more ways than imaginable. Stewart Bell, PLLC, can pursue justice for surviving family members while they spend time with other loved ones and go through the grieving process.

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Damages Available in Wrongful Death Cases

In a wrongful death case, a West Virginian judge or jury will determine the amount of damages that can be awarded. Survivors in a wrongful death case may pursue compensation for the following:

  • Sorrow, mental anguish, and solace, which may include society, companionship, comfort, guidance, kindly offices, and advice of the decedent
  • Loss of past and future wages
  • Costs of services and care provided by the decedent
  • Medical expenses related to the fatal injuries
  • Reasonable funeral expenses

Furthermore, according to the West Virginia statute on wrongful death, if the decedent had already filed a personal injury claim against the negligent party, the decedent’s representative may revive the claim. The personal representative can then proceed with the claim, and a separate, distinct cause of action may also be brought for wrongful death. 

Both causes of action will then be tried or settled in the same proceeding.

Don’t Try To Do It All Alone

The emotional trauma of losing someone you love can be overwhelming, and dealing with the legal complexities of a wrongful death claim only adds to the stress. Many people think they can handle a claim on their own, but this is not advisable.

First and foremost, wrongful death claims involve complex legal procedures and rules that are difficult to navigate without proper legal expertise. Trying to handle a wrongful death claim without an attorney can be a daunting task as numerous legal formalities and deadlines must be followed. Without an attorney, you risk missing crucial deadlines, losing some of the compensation you could’ve recovered, or failing to meet specific requirements that result in your case being dismissed.

Moreover, a wrongful death attorney has extensive knowledge of the law and access to resources that an individual may not have, such as expert witnesses and investigators. They can use these to fight for your rights and the rights of your loved ones.

An attorney from Stewart Bell, PLLC, will provide emotional support to you and your loved ones during this difficult time. Losing a loved one is emotionally draining, and the legal process can add to the stress and anxiety. A compassionate attorney can help you navigate the process and provide emotional support, ensuring that you have the peace of mind you need to grieve and heal.

At Stewart Bell, PLLC, we are committed to fighting for your rights and ensuring that justice is served.

What Comes Next?

Take the first step towards justice by contacting us today. You can share your case details with us through our online form, over the phone, or in person. We will carefully evaluate the specific facts and legal circumstances of your case and provide you with

Once we determine that you have a valid wrongful death claim, we will begin working on your case immediately. Our team will gather all relevant evidence, including medical reports and bills, eyewitness accounts, photographic evidence, and police reports. We will use this information to build a strong claim that ensures you receive the maximum possible settlement.

We understand the emotional stress that comes with losing a loved one, which is why we take care of all negotiations on your behalf. Our team at Stewart Bell, PLLC will ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve without any hassle. We will keep you informed throughout the negotiation process and fight to protect your interests.

Once you accept the final settlement offer, our team will work tirelessly to ensure that you receive your payment without any undue delays. We will be there every step of the way, making sure that all agreements are honored and that you receive the compensation you deserve.

Wrongful Death FAQs

In West Virginia, wrongful death is defined as a death caused by the wrongful act, neglect, or default of another person or entity.

The surviving spouse, children, or other dependents of the deceased may be entitled to compensation for damages related to the death, such as medical expenses, funeral expenses, and loss of income.

West Virginia follows a modified comparative fault rule, which means that a family can only recover damages in a wrongful death claim if the deceased is found to be less than 50% at fault for their injuries.

If they are found to be partially at fault, the settlement will be reduced by the percentage of fault assigned to them.

A criminal case for wrongful death is brought by the state or federal government to hold the at-fault party criminally responsible for their actions.

In contrast, a civil case for wrongful death is brought by the family of the deceased to seek compensation for damages related to the death. While the standards of proof and potential penalties differ between criminal and civil cases, they can both be pursued simultaneously.

Stewart Bell, PLLC, operates on a contingency fee model, meaning that no initial fees will be charged. Our payment is only earned when we secure financial compensation for our clients.

Usually, our fees are a portion of the overall recovery, and we have transparent fee discussions with our clients beforehand.

In addition, we offer free case reviews with valuable legal perspectives and advice.

While you are not required to hire a lawyer to pursue a wrongful death claim in West Virginia, it can be beneficial to do so.

An experienced attorney will have the knowledge and resources necessary to assist  with investigating the case, negotiating with insurance companies and other parties, and advocating for the family’s rights in court if necessary.

It can mean a lot to have a caring legal professional who can guide you through the claims process during what can be a deeply challenging time.

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For more than 30 years, the lawyers of Stewart Bell, PLLC have helped the people and businesses of West Virginia protect their interests and rights. We understand the issues that injured people and their families face after an accident and work quickly to obtain the MAXIMUM amount of compensation for every case we handle.

We have recovered MILLIONS of dollars for clients injured because of nursing home abuse, motor vehicle accidents or medical malpractice.

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