Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC, represents families who lose loved ones in heartbreaking drowning accidents. An accident along a Kentucky river can often leave a property owner or a state or federal agency liable after a tragedy to allow for support for grieving relatives. Families can contact our Kentucky wrongful death lawyers to schedule a free, confidential consultation. It’s a no-risk way to find out about every benefit available to family members at such a difficult time.
Do I Need a Lawyer After a Tragic River Drowning?
Families who lose a loved one to a drowning accident due to someone’s negligence should receive support in the aftermath of a tragedy. Close relatives, such as a spouse and children of the victim, can be placed in financial jeopardy almost immediately. They may have the bills for a funeral and leftover medical costs arrive at a time they’ve just lost the income a drowning victim had supported the family with.
Unfortunately, property owners and business owners will have insurance adjusters working to try to help them escape blame. When the at-fault party is a government agency, city or state officials will be counting on government lawyers to fight liability. If lawyers and insurance companies can’t manage to wiggle out of accepting fault, they’ll still try to limit the support they provide to grieving families.
Your Kentucky River Drowning Accident lawyer is your shield against this unfair treatment. Your lawyer watches over your case and makes sure property owners can’t dodge blame or get away with providing low settlement offers. At Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC, we strive to handle the frustrating parts of the claims process while allowing families time to grieve.
Kentucky River Drowning Risks
Kentucky rivers draw in people across our state with their beauty. People can paddle or float the Laurel River. They may motor out onto the Cumberland River or the Ohio River. Others may find a sandy spot along the Kentucky River for some swimming.
Rivers provide amazing adventures, but they also carry more dangers than a day at the pool. Rivers can have swift currents and deep water filled with obstructions. Man-made dangers include reckless boaters that can strike swimmers. These hazards lead to drowning accidents every year. Mother nature creates these risks, but it’s often a property owner or a government parks or wildlife agency that can bear the blame.
Owners and operators must act to prevent such accidents. They must warn people and try to remove as many hazards as possible. Those risks can include:
- Reckless or drunk boaters
- Lack of lifeguards and drowning safety equipment
- Lack of security to keep people off the river in dangerous spots
- Lack of barriers to keep unauthorized visitors out
- Fast-moving currents and boat wakes
- Sudden changes in weather
- Sudden drop-offs to deep water
- Underwater rocks and debris
- Cold water temperatures
- Steep banks and muddy, slippery conditions
Kentucky wants to make sure families are protected after losing precious loved ones. The state empowers victimized families to seek support for their many losses through a wrongful death claim. This claim seeks support for both the emotional and financial losses loved ones experience in the immediate aftermath and in the years to come. Your Kentucky drowning accident lawyer gets aggressive with liability insurance companies to see that you and your family receive what you all need to protect yourselves from financial harm in the future.
Who Can Be Held Responsible for a Kentucky River Drowning?
Identifying who may be responsible for the death of a loved one can be a challenge. In some cases, more than one party could bear financial responsibility. Your attorney fully investigates what happened and includes everyone liable in an accident in a lawsuit. Your lawyer then uses all the evidence gathered to make sure your family receives the most support possible.
These and other parties will all be investigated after a drowning and could be fully liable for a tragic death:
- Property owners
- Landlords and property management firms who have residential properties along rivers
- Resort owners
- Business owners that use the river such as inner tube and canoe rental companies
- Boaters who strike swimmers
- City or County departments that operate parks and beaches along rivers
- Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife Resources (KDFWR)
- Federal agencies
These entities are liable through premises liability laws. They force property owners and government departments to provide a legal “duty of care” to all visitors to parks, river banks, and docks. They must do everything possible to keep people out of dangerous situations and also have resources in place to help those who might get into trouble in the water.
They must post signs with warnings about hazards. Law enforcement must keep drunk and reckless boaters off the water. Even on private property, landowners are sometimes found responsible if they don’t warn people, especially children, away from dangerous stretches of water. They must do everything they can to keep those at risk off the river.
When property and business owners fail in this duty, they can be found liable for a deadly accident and be forced to support family members left behind to try to rebuild their lives.
Compensation Available for Families After a River Drowning
Families may seek full support as they attempt to rebuild their lives after a tragedy. They may need immediate help with burial costs and future assistance meeting financial needs without the support a loved one used to provide. Families can lose their homes and spouses can struggle to support children after a loved one’s income is lost.
Your Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC, attorney would demand the most possible in support for a family. That would mean listing every hardship the family endured and will endure in a wrongful death claim. These are just a few of the factors that should decide how much in support a family will receive through a wrongful death settlement:
- Support for funeral expenses.
- Support for leftover medical bills, ambulance fees, and search and rescue fees.
- Replacement of the income the deceased may have supported family members with.
- The guidance and love that family members will no longer be able to draw from in the future.
- Support for parents who have had a child taken from them in a drowning accident.
Contact a Kentucky River Drowning Attorney
Families in Kentucky are usually granted up to a year after a tragic drowning to file a wrongful death claim. However, cases involving a city, state, or federal agency can have a much shorter deadline to file. It’s best to check with a skilled wrongful death lawyer so that you meet these deadlines and don’t have your case rejected.
Contact Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC, for a free and confidential consultation on your case. At such a difficult time, we want families to know about every benefit available to them and how to force insurance companies to provide fair support for a death that could have been prevented.
If you decide our Kentucky Lake Drowning Lawyers can help earn your family more in support for the years ahead, you won’t need any money to hire us. We don’t get paid unless we win your case for you. Then our fee comes out of the settlement you and your family are awarded.