Wrongful death is defined as a death that is caused by the wrongful act or neglect of another party.
According to Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) 30.020, a person or entity can be held liable for wrongful death if the death of another person is caused by Negligence or Wrongful Act, Default, Wrongful Act, or Omission of an Officer.
This statute establishes the basis for a wrongful death claim and allows specific eligible individuals to bring a legal action seeking damages for the losses suffered due to the death of a family member.
The purpose of a wrongful death claim is to seek compensation for the losses resulting from the death of an individual caused by the wrongful act or negligence of another party. Eligibility is generally restricted to individuals with a close relationship to the deceased.
Who Can Pursue a Wrongful Death Claim in Oregon?
The primary categories of individuals who may be eligible to file a wrongful death claim in Oregon include:
- Surviving Spouse
The surviving spouse of the deceased person is typically eligible to file a wrongful death claim. This includes spouses in legal marriages as well as domestic partnerships.
Surviving children of the deceased, whether biological, adopted, or stepchildren, may be eligible to file a wrongful death claim.
The parents of a deceased minor child may file a wrongful death claim. In the case of an adult child, parents may be eligible if they were financially dependent on the deceased.
- Personal Representative of the Estate
If there is no surviving spouse, children, or parents, the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate may have the authority to file a wrongful death claim on behalf of the estate and any potential heirs.
Oregon law generally prioritizes the surviving spouse and children as the primary beneficiaries with the right to bring a wrongful death claim. If there is no surviving spouse or children, the right may pass to the parents or, if none of these relatives exist, to the estate’s representative.
It’s important to note that Oregon’s wrongful death laws can be complex, and eligibility can depend on various factors, including the specific circumstances of the case and the relationships between the deceased and potential claimants.
If you are considering filing a wrongful death claim in Oregon, we can help you determine eligibility, navigate the legal process, and advocate on behalf of the eligible parties to seek compensation for the losses suffered due to the wrongful death.
Contact Our Wrongful Death Attorneys at the Law Offices of Jon Friedman
Contact our Multnomah County wrongful death attorneys at the Law Offices of Jon Friedman at (503)-242-1440 or online today to schedule a free consultation and get the help you need to make informed decisions about the direction of your case.