Serious Personal Injury & Wrongful Death
For over 50 years the Atlanta lawyers at Finch McCranie LLP have been practicing wrongful death and serious personal injury law and representing clients throughout the Southeast.
We have a long history of success in taking personal injury and wrongful death cases to trial and receiving favorable verdicts for our clients. Our firm has earned the highest rating (“AV”) from Martindale-Hubbell, which rates law firms throughout the United States.
There are many law firms that handle complex matters, but very few whose lawyers actually try cases in front of a judge and jury on a regular basis. Finch McCranie is one of those few firms. Our Atlanta personal injury attorneys have extensive jury trial experience which enables us to prepare each case with a willingness to go to trial. Because opposing firms know this, it allows us to resolve many cases before trial.A Few Examples of Finch McCranie’s Wrongful Death & Serious Injury Cases:
- Firm won an $11 million jury verdict in a medical malpractice case.
- Firm won an $11.7 million judgment in a recent wrongful death case.
- Firm won a multi-million dollar settlement from two security companies in a wrongful death case.
- Firm obtained an $8 million judgment for a client seriously injured in a collision.
- Firm obtained a $5 million jury verdict in a wrongful death lawsuit
These are just a few of the hundreds of personal injury and wrongful death cases the firm has been involved with over the past 50 years. We invite you to visit our Results page for more examples of the favorable results we have obtained for our clients.Finch McCranie – Experienced Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Lawyers in Atlanta
When you have been injured or lost a loved one, you may be entitled to compensation from the party who caused the harm. One of the most important factors to ensure that you recover from the other party is hiring a personal injury and wrongful death attorney as soon as practicable to handle your claim. The first thing we do when evaluating a case is to determine whether the party who caused the harm can be held legally liable. This involves reviewing the police report or incident report (if applicable), interviewing witnesses, inspecting the scene where the incident occurred, and locating any photos or videos which may depict the incident or the events leading to the incident. In every case, it is of critical importance to act quickly to gather evidence and interview witnesses. In many instances critical evidence can be lost or destroyed unless it is secured quickly. In certain cases, we use a team of retired FBI agents who help us investigate the incident and locate and interview witnesses and other relevant persons. We also hire medical experts, accident reconstructionists, and engineering experts in appropriate cases.
Another important step in investigating a potential case is to identify any insurance policies which may provide coverage for the incident. This involves reviewing applicable automobile liability policies, excess policies, homeowners’ policies, and any other insurance policies which may provide coverage. If the party who caused the harm was acting in the course and scope of their employment (or “on the job”) then their employer may be legally responsible for their actions. In several cases, we have been able to identify and recover insurance proceeds where other lawyers were unsuccessful.
We also conduct a thorough evaluation of our clients’ damages. This enables us to maximize the recovery in our cases. We will obtain and review medical records, tax returns (if the client is unable to work as a result of their injury), and all other documentation that shows how our clients’ lives have been affected by the incident. We also interview family members, friends, and in some cases the client’s employer to understand the extent of harm caused by the incident. This enables us to determine the most effective way to present our clients’ damages to maximize the settlement or verdict.Situations That may Lead to a Potential Case
Serious personal injury and wrongful death cases arise in a variety of circumstances. Examples include the following:
- A property owner or company’s negligence in the enforcement of safety regulations.
- A construction worker is killed because of faulty tools or equipment.
- A company does not enforce safety regulations, and a worker is killed on the job.
- A patient is killed after taking a defective antibiotic or over-the-counter pill.
- A patient dies during surgery because the hospital, the doctor, or the nurse was negligent.
- Someone dies because a crime was committed.
- A person’s reckless behavior results in another’s death.
- A pedestrian or passenger dies because a car, tractor, truck, bus, or motorcycle on the road was defective.
- A patient dies due to nursing home negligence.
- A passenger dies in a car accident because of a negligent driver.
- Passengers on a plane are killed because of pilot error.
- A person acts carelessly or negligently, and someone dies.
It is critically important to collect and preserve evidence quickly in a personal injury or wrongful death case, whether it is a part from a tool or an appliance, an automobile, electronic data or video stored in a tractor-trailer or other commercial vehicle, medical records, witness statements, or other evidence. We have a team of investigators, most of whom are retired FBI agents, who assist us in collecting evidence and interviewing witnesses.Damages in a Wrongful Death Case
In a wrongful death context, the measure of damages is compensation for the full value of the life of the decedent. See generally O.C.G.A. § 51-4-1. Death claims in Georgia are typically divided into two separate claims. One is for the wrongful death per se as measured by the “full value of the life of the decedent” without deducting for any of the necessary or personal expenses of the decedent had he or she lived. The full value of the life of the decedent consists of two elements: (1) the economic value of the deceased's normal life expectancy; and (2) an intangible element incapable of exact proof. Department of Human Resources v. Johnson, 264 Ga. App. 730, 592 S.E.2d 124 (2003). If a young person dies and had a 50-year life expectancy and the person was employed at the time, the economist can project the economic damages. As regards the non-economic damages or the loss of the full value of the life of the decedent, damages are measured from the decedent's point of view; a child's right to recover for a parent's death is a substitution of the child in the decedent's place for the purposes of recovering for the injury inflicted upon the decedent. The measure of damages for the wrongful death of a parent brought by such person's child, therefore, is not the child's loss from the parent's absence, but the parent's loss from not being able to raise the child. Brock v. Wedincamp, 253 Ga. App. 275, 558 S.E.2d 836 (2002). Family members and friends can testify to what the decedent enjoyed about their life and the relationships lost.
The second component of a wrongful death claim belongs to the estate. All causes of action that would have accrued to the decedent had he or she lived must be filed in the name of the Administrator or Administratrix of the estate. These include claims for medical expenses incurred prior to death, funeral and burial expenses, conscious pain and suffering prior to death and, where appropriate, punitive damages. See O.C.G.A. § 51-4-5(b); Waldon v. Archebald Memorial Hospital, 197 Ga. App. 275, 398 S.E. 2d 271 (1990). Where separate suits are instituted under wrongful death and estate claims, a defendant is entitled to joinder of the claims, even though the measures of damages are distinct for each claim. Stenger v. Grimes, 260 Ga. 838, 400 S.E.2d 318 (1991).
If you believe you may have a wrongful death case, it is important that you hire an experienced attorney who understands how to develop damages evidence and effectively present the wrongful death case to a jury.
There are a number of good reasons why Finch McCranie’s wrongful death and personal injury lawyers in Atlanta have enjoyed so much success:
- Over 50 years experience in successfully trying cases.
- Renowned throughout the southeast as successful personal injury and wrongful death lawyers.
- Experienced and knowledgeable attorneys, paralegals and legal assistants.
- The legal skills to ensure that you receive excellent representation for your case.
- Experienced and dedicated investigators on staff available to investigate any case.
If so, turn to the Atlanta personal injury & wrongful death attorneys at Finch McCranie. For decades Finch McCranie has successfully represented hundreds of victims and their families, many of whom have suffered serious injury or wrongful death. The firm’s Atlanta injury lawyers, working in the Wrongful Death & Serious Injury Practice Group, have succeeded in winning a large number of personal injury cases for their clients. We invite you to visit our Results page for examples of the settlements and verdicts we have obtained over the years.Contact Finch McCranie Today for a Free Consultation
Call the Atlanta personal injury and wrongful death lawyers at Finch McCranie to arrange for a free consultation. You will always speak directly with one of our lawyers. Call us today at (404) 658-9070.