On behalf of Smiley & Smiley, LLP posted in Personal Injury on Tuesday, October 28, 2008.
I was asked the following "Ask Andrew" question:
"Does Jennifer Hudson have the right to pursue a wrongful death case as a result of the horrendous murders of her Mother, brother and nephew?"
The short, but not so simple, answer is Yes, she and her family have the right to bring a wrongful death case. A family member has the right to bring a wrongful death case when a loved one has died as a result of the negligence of others. In addition to negligence, a claim can be pursued if the death was caused intentionally, by an assault or, as in this instance, a murder - this is known as an "intentional tort."
Ms. Hudson and her family would face a few problems which would likely preclude a successful case. As of this moment, the family is not certain who committed the murders. However, once the murderer is identified, it is highly unlikely that the person has the money to pay a settlement or verdict obtained in the lawsuit. In a negligence case there is insurance to pay for death, in an intentional tort there is not.
So, yes, Ms. Hudson and her family have a case that they would likely win, but there would be no money to pay if they are successful
My heart goes out to Jennifer Hudson and her family.
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