Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Maryland: An Essential Guide

The grief and pain of losing a loved one are immeasurable, and the circumstances can be even more challenging when the loss was caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongful actions. In Maryland, individuals who have suffered the death of a family member due to another party’s negligence may be eligible to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit. 

At The Law Office of Ben Evan, our goal is to provide educational, informative, helpful, and unique content related to personal injury law in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, empowering our clients to make informed decisions as they navigate the complexities of their cases. In this blog post, we will discuss the fundamentals of wrongful death lawsuits in Maryland, the elements necessary to establish a valid claim, and the importance of partnering with an experienced personal injury attorney.

Filing and pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit can be an incredibly complex and emotionally challenging experience. You must have a clear understanding of Maryland’s wrongful death laws and adhere to the stringent legal requirements that dictate the claims process. 

Understanding Maryland’s Wrongful Death Laws

Maryland’s wrongful death laws are designed to compensate family members for the loss of a loved one caused by another party’s negligent or wrongful actions:

1. Primary Beneficiaries: These include the deceased’s surviving spouse, children, and parents, who have the first right to file a wrongful death claim.

2. Secondary Beneficiaries: If there are no primary beneficiaries, other family members, such as siblings, nieces, and nephews, may be eligible to file a claim.

3. Statute of Limitations: In Maryland, you typically have three years from the date of death to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Exceptions may apply in certain situations, such as medical malpractice cases.

4. Types of Damages: Compensation may be awarded for economic damages (such as loss of income and funeral expenses) and non-economic damages (such as loss of companionship and emotional pain).

Elements Necessary to Establish a Wrongful Death Claim

To succeed in a wrongful death lawsuit, you must prove several key elements:

1. Duty of Care: Demonstrate that the defendant owed a duty of care to the deceased, such as a driver’s responsibility to operate their vehicle safely.

2. Breach of Duty: Show that the defendant breached this duty of care through negligent or wrongful actions, such as drunk driving or medical malpractice.

3. Causation: Establish a direct link between the defendant’s breach of duty and the death of the loved one, proving that the defendant’s actions were the cause of the fatality.

4. Damages: Provide evidence of the emotional and financial harm suffered due to the loss of your loved one.

Challenges in Pursuing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Several challenges can arise when filing a wrongful death claim:

1. Complex Legal Requirements: Maryland’s wrongful death laws consist of stringent legal requirements and procedural rules, making it crucial to understand the state’s laws when pursuing your claim comprehensively.

2. Documentation and Evidence: Gathering and preserving evidence to support your claim can be a challenging task. Essential documentation may include medical records, witness statements, and expert testimony.

3. Proving Causation: Establishing that the defendant’s actions directly caused the wrongful death of your loved one can be a complicated process, often requiring assistance from medical experts and accident reconstructionists.

4. Emotional Toll: Pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit can be emotionally draining and stressful for the family members involved, further emphasizing the importance of enlisting the help of a compassionate and skilled attorney.

The Role of an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney

Partnering with an experienced personal injury attorney can provide valuable support and guidance throughout the wrongful death claims process:

1. Case Evaluation: Your attorney will review the details of your case, assess its merits, and offer advice on the best course of action.

2. Evidence Collection: A skilled attorney can help gather the necessary evidence to substantiate your claim, such as accident reports, medical records, and expert testimony.

3. Negotiation and Settlement: An experienced attorney can negotiate with insurance companies and opposing counsel, striving to reach a fair settlement on your behalf.

4. Trial Representation: If your case goes to trial, a seasoned personal injury attorney will provide unwavering representation and advocate for your best interests in court.


The process of filing and pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit in Maryland can be a complex and emotionally challenging experience. At The Law Office of Ben Evan, our compassionate team of personal injury attorneys is committed to guiding our clients in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, and the surrounding areas through this difficult time. We understand the profound impact of losing a loved one and strive to provide support, guidance, and skilled representation as you seek justice and compensation.

If you have lost a family member due to another party’s negligence or wrongful actions, don’t face the legal battle alone—contact our office for a consultation today. We will address each aspect of your case, from establishing the necessary elements of a wrongful death claim to negotiating with insurance companies, ensuring that your rights and interests are protected as you navigate this challenging journey. At The Law Office of Ben Evan, we are dedicated to helping you pursue the justice and compensation you deserve following the tragic loss of a loved one.

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