Michigan has enacted a law, which is named the "Wrongful Death Act". In the event that a person dies in an accident, whatever it might be, and however it might happen, the Wongful Death Act regulates the way a case proceeds and who obtains the money recovery, in the event of a settlement or judgment.
In the event of a death as a result of an accident, the only proper entity to represent the deceased is the personal representative appointed by the probate judge to represent the estate of the deceased. A wrongful death case cannot be settled without a probate estate being in effect at the time of the settlement and a personal representative being appointed. Normally, the settlements have to be approved by a judge, and, depending on circumstances, this can be the circuit judge where the case is pending or the probate judge, if a case is not pending or it is pending on the probate court.
The Wrongful Death Act also provides for the distribution of the proceeds of a settlement or judgment. The law designates those who are "interested persons". This can be quite an extensive list in certain circumstances. However, the whole purpose of the Wrongful Death Act, as to distribution, is to make sure that those persons who have suffered loss and who are within the category of "interested persons", are the ones who receive the benefit of any settlement, in the event of a tragic death of a relative.
As attorneys for many years, and handling many wrongful death cases, the lawyers of Gary M. Bloom, P.C. are clearly knowledgeable in this area of the law.
Losing a loved one is difficult. Our office can guide grieving relatives through this maze, with the least amount of additional heartache and worry.