Here is how to prove wrongful death in Michigan

Published on
May 10, 2023

The death of a loved one can be traumatic. And knowing that your loved one has died due to preventable circumstances in the hands of another party makes it even once. When someone loses their life due to another person’s act of negligence or recklessness, you can seek damages for wrongful death in Michigan.  

How Michigan law defines wrongful death

In Michigan, wrongful death is defined as any death that occurs as a result of a third party’s acts of negligence or recklessness. The third-party could be an individual, a business, or another entity. After the victim’s death, Michigan state law allows the deceased family to file a wrongful death suit against the at-fault party for appropriate compensation.  

Key elements of proving a wrongful death in Michigan

Here are the four key elements that you must prove to file a successful wrongful death claim in the state of Michigan.

Negligence on the party of the at-fault party

During a wrongful death suit, you must prove that the victim’s death did indeed result from the defendant’s recklessness, carelessness, or act of negligence.

Breach of duty to the victim

The court will require you to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant owed some level of duty to the deceased. For instance, a motorist has a duty to drive safely and obey traffic rules. You will be required to demonstrate how the defendant neglected their duty resulting in the victim’s death.

Causation of death

While proving breach of duty, you will be required to prove that the victim’s death was a direct result of the defendant’s acts of negligence or recklessness.  

Damages incurred

To justify compensation for wrongful death, you will be required to prove costs incurred as a result of the acts of negligence that resulted in death. These may include hospitalization costs, medical expenses, loss of income, and funeral costs.  Proving a wrongful death requires strong and convincing evidence such as expert testimony. A wrongful death attorney can review your situation, help you put your facts together, and build a strong case that will ensure you get justice and the compensation you deserve.

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