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Oregon Wrongful Death Claims

When a loved one has been killed as the result of the negligence of another, it makes a devastating time even worse. Your family and friends may be filled with questions, worry, and confusion.

Wrongful death is a claim against an individual whose negligent conduct caused the death of another individual, and under Oregon state law, there is recourse for those who have been affected by a wrongful death case.

Who may claim damages in a wrongful death claim?

On the premise that those who have been left behind by the decedent have also been harmed, family members may make a wrongful death claim against the negligent party or parties.

In Oregon, the beneficiaries are limited. Generally, a spouse or children of the victim may make a wrongful death claim.

There are statutory limitations on beneficiaries in Oregon wrongful death cases. For example, if a child’s biological parent marries a non-biological parent while the child is still a minor and in the custody of the biological parent, then the stepchild will be considered a beneficiary of the step-parent in the event of the step-parent’s wrongful death.

However, if the child is over 18 when the biological parent remarries, then the stepchild is not a beneficiary of the new non-biological parent because he or she has already reached the age of majority.

What damages can be awarded in a wrongful death claim?

When a negligent party is accused of wrongful death, certain damages may be awarded in the event of a successful jury verdict or settlement. These damages include:

  • Medical, burial, and memorial services
  • Loss of wages the decedent would have earned had they survived;
  • Pain and suffering of the decedent;
  • Compensation to the decedent’s spouse, children, stepchildren, and other family

Additionally, if gross negligence can be proven, punitive damages may be awarded.

A wrongful death attorney can help

If you have been affected by a wrongful death, it is important to contact an attorney who is well versed in this often complex are of law – one who can help to bring you peace of mind, and answer any questions you may have during this time.

The Law Offices of Jon Friedman have experience handling Oregon wrongful death claims. We will address your concerns with care, compassion, and skill. For a free initial consultation, we welcome your call to our Portland office at (503) 242-1440.

How to Prove Medical or Legal Malpractice

To sue a doctor for medical malpractice or a lawyer for legal malpractice, one must prove certain elements in order to have a successful case.

While this is a guide to some situations or events that need to occur before one can sue a doctor or lawyer, it is imperative to remember that each case should be evaluated on its own specific facts.

Consulting with a qualified medical or legal malpractice attorney will ensure that your claim has merit and may be successful in court or settlement negotiations.

Proving Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare provider fails to adhere to the standard of care when providing treatment. Examples of medical malpractice include:

  • Wrongfully diagnosing a disease or condition
  • Failing to provide treatment
  • Unreasonable delay in treating a diagnosed condition
  • Failing to warn a patient of the known risks of a treatment.

To prove that medical malpractice occurred, the plaintiff, or individual bringing the case, must show that:

  • A physician-patient relationship existed. This means that the patient hired the doctor, and the doctor agreed to provide care.
  • The doctor was negligent. Being unhappy with your care is not negligence. It must be shown that a doctor caused harm in a way that a competent doctor, under the same circumstances, would not have.
  • The doctor’s negligence caused the injury. This is a “more likely than not standard” – that the doctor’s conduct more likely than not directly caused the injury.
  • The injury led to specific damages. These can be economic or non-economic – for instance, pain and suffering.

Proving Legal Malpractice

Legal malpractice is deemed to have occurred when a lawyer failed to use the ordinary skill and care that would be used by other lawyers in handling a similar case under similar circumstances.

For a legal malpractice case to exist, the plaintiff, or person bringing the case, must prove the following:

  • That the attorney owed the client a duty to act properly;
  • That the attorney was negligent in that duty;
  • That the negligence harmed the client;
  • And that the client suffered financial loss as a result of the negligence.

Simply losing a case is not grounds for a legal malpractice suit.

Jon Friedman, from the Law Offices of Jon Friedman, is experienced in handling medical malpractice and legal malpractice cases. If you, or a loved one, have been the victim of medical or legal malpractice, we welcome your call to our Portland area office at (503) 242-1440.

Types of Legal Compensation Available After a Car Accident

If you, or a loved one, have been in a car accident in Portland or in Oregon, you know the devastating effects that this can have on you and those around you.

Work time, wages and income will likely be lost. Moreover, the injuries sustained may be so traumatic that it is not possible to work again, resulting in a permanent loss of income. We know that the recovery process itself can be challenging, but while you recuperate your bills still need to be paid – including, now, hefty medical bills.

Financial burdens may not be the first thing on an auto accident victim’s mind, but they become increasingly important in the aftermath of the crash. Fortunately, Oregon law requires auto insurance policies to have Personal Injury Protection. This protection will pay for medical bills and income loss for the first year after a car accident.

Personal Injury Protection

How does Oregon’s Personal Injury Protection work?

  • $15,000 in medical expenses for all medical bills necessarily caused by the accident will be paid so long as they are incurred within one year of the wreck.
  • After an accident victim has missed 14 consecutive days of work, $3,000 per month or 70 percent of wage loss, whichever is less, will be paid for up to one year.

Knowing this protection exists provides some peace of mind to those who have suffered an injury. However, given that Personal Injury Protection is only available for one year and the money it pays out is capped may require creativity to help those who do not fully recover within one year.

Many motor vehicle accidents can result in severe injuries that may take many years of medical treatment before recovery. If one sustains permanent disability and loss of ability to work exists, Personal Injury Protection provisions will be of limited help.

What to do after Personal Injury Protection runs out?

A professional and experienced Portland auto accident attorney will assist you in securing the financial compensation you deserve for the damages that you, or your loved one, incurred as the result of someone else’s negligence.

With the right legal representation, a strong case can be made to recover the following from a negligent third party or their insurance company:

  • Past, present and future medical expenses
  • Property damage
  • Past, present and future wage loss
  • Past, present and future pain and suffering
  • Compensation for past, present and future interference with your ability to perform your usual daily activities

The Law Offices of Jon Friedman have been helping auto accident victims to claim the full and fair compensation for thirty years to which they are entitled. If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle crash, we welcome your call for a free consultation on 503-360-1506.

Protecting Yourself After an Auto Accident

Auto accidents result in the deaths of over 33,500 people and the injuries of approximately 3.3 million people every year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

When a car accident happens, we know that you may become flustered, emotionally shocked, and perhaps physically injured. For the citizens of Portland and Oregon, there are important steps to take after a car wreck to make certain that your rights are protected.

What to do following a crash

If you have been in a car wreck, the following steps will help gather the essential information that your car accident attorney will need to work on your case:

  • Pull over to a safe, well lit area away from traffic and turn on your hazard lights.
  • Check yourself and the others involved for injuries. They may not always be obvious after an accident, but it is important to check anyway. If there are significant injuries, call for an ambulance.
  • If there are significant injuries, call 911 and request a police officer come to the scene.
  • File a DMV report and retain a copy. This will contain important information that is needed to pursue a claim as a result of your motor vehicle collision.
  • Speak to witnesses and obtain ways of contacting them in the future. If a witness does not want to get involved, do not force them. There may be other eyewitnesses who will be happy to talk to you and provide their contact details. If nobody volunteers, ask those who may stop if they would please share their contact information with you.
  • Take notes. Ensure that you record the date, the time, and the locations of the vehicles after the crash, including any debris. Note impact zones and the events that occurred as you remember them. Describe how the collision occurred. This is important as memory can fade over time, and you may be asked to recall this information later.
  • Get the other driver’s information including their name, address, phone number, driver’s license number, insurance company name and policy number, and make, model, and year of their car.
  • Take pictures. You should take photos of the accident scene, the cars involved, as well as any injuries you or your loved ones may have suffered.

Additionally, make sure to document all medical visits and treatment, as well as obtaining estimates of property damage. An experienced auto accident attorney needs this information to put together a persuasive case for settlement negotiations or a jury trial.

If you, or a loved one, are in Portland, or anywhere in Oregon, and have been injured in an auto accident, we invite you to call the Law Offices of Jon Friedman on 503-360-1506 for a free initial consultation.