We are so sorry this has happened to you and your family. There is nothing more tragic and heartbreaking than when you've lost a loved one. Your whole world is ripped out from under you in a second, and there’s no way anyone can replace them in your life.
Although we can no longer do anything for your loved one who died, our Nebraska wrongful death lawyer can still help you and your family to understand how to file a wrongful death claim so you can continue through the process of grieving without legal confusion.
Only a Personal Representative Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Nebraska
Once it’s been determined there’s cause to start a wrongful death action, it’s important to understand that the only person who can undertake this claim is a personal representative. That person, also sometimes call the “PR,” has the responsibility of settling the decedent’s—meaning your deceased loved one’s—estate and can only be appointed by a county court.
The appointment of a PR can only be made in a probate action. According to our Nebraska wrongful death lawyer, a probate action is a legal action undertaken in court to take inventory of the deceased’s assets, pay estate and inheritance taxes, settle their affairs, and distribute estate assets to any of their heirs.
Wrongful Death Settlements are Not Taxed by the State or the Federal Government
So, you don’t have to worry about paying a huge tax bill on top of everything else you are dealing with.
And if your loved one didn’t have a will at the time of their death, a will actually isn’t required in a probate action. Nebraska law provides the terms for the distribution of their property. For example, in a case in which a man dies and leaves a wife and two children, the law provides that the spouse would receive one half of her husband’s estate while the children would split the remainder equally.
When deciding who’ll act as the PR, that appointment can be determined by the will, if one exists. If the decedent doesn’t have a will or never appointed anyone, the preference schedule for the personal representative will be determined by law. For example, if a man dies without a will, the law states that his surviving spouse will have the first preference as his PR. If he has no surviving spouse, his biological child/children will be next for the appointment, and so on.
Have You Lost a Loved One? Our Nebraska Wrongful Death Lawyer Can Help!
There’s a lot to undertake when you've lost a loved one suddenly, and the grief is overwhelming enough without the legal implications. At Steffens Law, our Nebraska wrongful death lawyer understands your situation and has the compassion and experience to help you through this painful process. If you’re searching for answers after your loved one was killed in an accident or if you'd like to schedule a free consult with our experienced Nebraska wrongful death lawyer, please reach out to us at 308-872-8327 or contact us online today.