If you have suffered the loss of a loved one, you may have heard of the New Mexico Wrongful Death Act. Yet how does the Wrongful Death Act affect you, and what rights does it grant you to pursue compensation and justice for the loss of a loved one due to negligence or other potentially actionable conditions?
The New Mexico Wrongful Death Act is a set of statutes under state law that detail what options and rights you have in the event you lose someone to an event that could be classified as wrongful death. These statutes basically say that if the death of your loved one would not have occurred without the actions of the other involved party, you have the right to pursue a claim for damages.
The statutes also outline any limitations. In general you have three years from the time of death to pursue a claim against the accused party, but two years if caused by a government actor. The statutes also look at the specific case of deaths caused by negligent or accidental failure in operation of public trains, buses or other conveyances operated by a municipal or corporate entity. In these cases, it is the owning and controlling entity of the transportation line who is responsible for any damages, vas opposed to only the driver or operator who may have been involved in the incident leading to death. So if your loved one died on public transit, you would pursue the city rather than the driver.
This blog post should be used only as an informational reference, and not as a substitute for legal advice.