When a person or possibly a business causes the death of someone you love, you will experience a lot of different emotions. Grief, depression and anger are among the most common responses.
Some people will harness those negative emotions and use them as motivation to seek justice. In theory, you may be able to bring a financial claim against the responsible party, but you also need to be aware of the limitations on a wrongful death claim brought under New Mexico law.
Only certain people can file a claim
If you lived with your boyfriend or girlfriend for years but never got married, your relationship may not actually meet the standards to file a wrongful death claim. New Mexico state law specifically empowers spouses, children, parents, grandchildren and siblings to file wrongful-death lawsuits. If there are only more distant family members, then the right to file a claim passes in the same way that intestate succession rights do.
You only have three years to file a claim
There is a strict statute of limitations that applies to wrongful death cases. Most people filing a wrongful death claim in New Mexico will need to take legal action within three years of the date of their loved one’s death or potentially lose the right to seek compensation.
You need evidence that misconduct or neglect played a role
To hold someone financially accountable for a tragic death, you need some kind of evidence that they are at fault. New Mexico allows people to file wrongful death claims if a fatality results from negligence or from misconduct, like drunk driving.
Learning more about wrongful death claims can help your family after a tragic loss. While money will never replace your loved one, a claim can help you hold the other party responsible for their actions.