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Christina Grimmie was a talented young singer, songwriter, and pianist. After placing third on The Voice, she rose to fame, releasing an album and going on tour around the world. Sadly, after a concert in which she performed at The Plaza Live in Orlando, Florida, Grimmie was shot to death by an obsessed fan. Grimmie’s parents and brother filed a wrongful death suit against the owner of the venue and the tour promoter, claiming both parties failed to take adequate security measures.
A wrongful death civil lawsuit may be filed when a person dies as a result of someone’s negligent or intentional act. The standard of proof is lower than that of criminal trials, requiring the plaintiff to prove their case not beyond a reasonable doubt, but merely by a preponderance of the evidence. Because of this, plaintiffs will often prevail in a wrongful death civil suit despite being unsuccessful in a criminal trial.
In order to prove wrongful death, the surviving family members will generally have to prove that the victim’s death was caused by the defendant’s negligence or intent to cause harm, that the surviving family members suffered monetary damages as a result of the victim’s death, and that a surviving family member is an official representative for the deceased’s estate. A wrongful death suit may be filed for many different circumstances including medical malpractice, airplane accidents, exposure to occupational hazards, or criminal behavior such as in the case of Christina Grimmie.
Damage awards in a wrongful death suit may include pecuniary damages such as the court-estimated financial loss of support to the surviving family because of the victim’s death, and the financial cost of medical and funeral expenses. In order to determine the amount of support lost by the surviving family, the court will take into account the victim’s age, health, earning capacity, and life expectancy, among other factors. The award will include interest from the date of the victim’s death.
Grimmie’s family sued to recover the cost of medical and funeral expenses, lost support from her future earnings and their emotional distress. The Orange County judge dismissed their complaint, stating that there needs to be more distinction between the roles of the two defendants. Grimmie’s family has filed an amended complaint and the outcome of their case remains to be seen.
If you feel that a member of your family lost their life due to the negligence, recklessness, or deliberate actions of someone else, contact a Cherry Hill wrongful death lawyer at Folkman Law Offices, P.C. We help families pursue justice through wrongful death claims. Our team of experienced, compassionate lawyers can guide you through the process and explain all your legal options. We will fight passionately to ensure the best possible outcome for your case. With offices in Cherry Hill, New Jersey and Philadelphia, we represent clients throughout South Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Call us at 856-354-9444 or contact us online to discuss your case today.