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Who is Unable to File a Florida Wrongful Death Claim

Why Can’t I File a Wrongful Death Claim in Florida?

When you lose a loved one because of the reckless actions of another party in the state of Florida, you may have the ability to file a Florida wrongful death claim to recover monetary damages. But not everyone who is related to or knows the deceased has the ability to file a wrongful death claim. Florida’s wrongful death statutes indicated that there are very specific parties who can and who cannot be compensated.

The wrongful death process can be incredibly difficult and complex. This is especially true for loved ones that are still mourning. When you work with an experienced lawyer, the process can go much smoother. The Jacksonville wrongful death attorneys at the Law Offices of Sheftall & Associates can assist you throughout every step of the wrongful death claims process.

Who Is Eligible to File a Wrongful Death Claim in Florida?

Who is Unable to File a Florida Wrongful Death ClaimEach state in the nation has its own guidelines and laws for who can be compensated for a wrongful death claim, how long beneficiaries have to file their claim, and what damages are allowed to be included. In Florida, the following individuals are eligible parties that have the right to file a claim for compensation when their loved one lost their life from another party’s negligent actions:


A spouse is always eligible to recover several damages for their loss. They can file a claim that pays for final expenses, loss of support and services, mental suffering, as well as loss of the benefits of the relationship.

Minor Children

Children that are younger than 25 years of age are considered minor children that are always able to recover damages. Some of these damages that minor children may include in their claim are mental suffering, loss of companionship from their parent, loss of instruction and direction, loss of support, and loss of services.

Children that are Adults

When a child is grown up and older than 25 years of age, they can recover compensation if there is no surviving spouse. Also, adult children are unable to be compensated for death that comes as a result of medical malpractice.


When minor children, under 25 years of age are deceased, their parents can file for pain and suffering damages. When children are adults and over the age of 25, parents have the right to file when their adult children do not have a surviving spouse or surviving children. Additionally, parents of adult children are unable to be compensated for death that was a consequence of medical malpractice.

Adopted Children

All legally adopted children of a deceased individual are entitled to file a wrongful death claim for compensation. However, if a person raises a child who is not their biological child and never goes through the process of legal adoption, that child is not eligible for compensation.

Legal Dependants

Sometimes, a person who dies has legally cared for many parties. If there are legal dependents that rely on the deceased for financial means, then these beneficiaries can file a wrongful death claim for that loss of financial support and for loss of services.

Who Cannot File a Wrongful Death Claim in Florida?

The Florida Wrongful Death Act is specific on what parties are entitled to compensation through a wrongful death claim. Surviving spouses, children, parents, and legal dependants have the right to compensation. Other blood relatives who were not legally dependant on the deceased are unable to be compensated for their mental suffering. So even though close blood relatives may be emotionally traumatized by the sadness and grief they feel after a loss, they will be unable to file a wrongful death claim and be compensated for this emotional distress.

How Long Do Beneficiaries Have to File a Florida Wrongful Death Claim?

Even though a legal beneficiary may be entitled to and deserve compensation from a wrongful death claim, if they do not file their claim in time they will not be able to secure those funds. The reason is that Florida, like all other states, has time limits to file civil suits for compensation. The time limit is termed the statute of limitations. The wrongful death statute of limitations in Florida is two years from the date of the death.

It is incredibly important to make sure that the case is made with sufficient evidence to show that negligence occurred and is what caused the incident that killed your loved one. If you are unfamiliar with the wrongful death claims process, speaking to a qualified attorney can be beneficial. The Jacksonville wrongful death lawyers at Sheftall Law have been aiding victims of personal injury and wrongful death incidents in Jacksonville for more than 40 years. 

The unexpected loss of a loved one is shocking and alarming. The people left behind will have their lives permanently altered when death takes place. Making the case for compensation is essential. It is imperative to be successful with a claim that the following factors are established:

  • The party had a duty of care to your loved one and violated it through negligent actions.
  • These negligent actions caused the incident that killed your loved one.
  • Qualified beneficiaries suffered damages after the death.

There are several ways that negligence can lead to a deadly accident including but not limited to:

  • Car accidents.
  • Medical malpractice.
  • Slip and fall incidents and premise liability.
  • Boating accidents.
  • Cruise ship accidents.
  • Motorcycle accidents.

Speak to a Jacksonville Wrongful Death Attorney Today

Death from negligence is a reality that happens more often than it should. This is why there are laws that provide victims who lose loved ones to take legal action against reckless parties that caused their losses. 

After a deadly incident takes place it is crucial to get legal support as soon as possible. The Jacksonville personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Sheftall & Associates are committed to helping victims work through the legal system with as little stress as possible. Families that have suffered loss have to endure tremendous emotional anguish. Call the Law Offices of Sheftall & Associates today to discuss your unique situation and learn more about how skilled legal representation can help you obtain compensation. You can reach the Law Offices of Sheftall & Associates to schedule a free consultation at 904-647-2296.