The death of a loved one can be an overwhelming event for the members of a family in Kentucky. While in some situations the relatives and friends of a dying individual may have time to say their goodbyes and make their peace with their loss, in other instances life may be stolen from otherwise healthy individuals because of accidents and intentionally harmful conduct. "Wrongful deaths" are losses that stem from incidents that fall into the latter category.
Since 1950, members of the military have not possessed the right, enjoyed by civilians in Kentucky and across the nation who receive care from doctors or hospitals, to file medical malpractice lawsuits against military doctors or hospitals. But Congress may remove part of this legal privilege blocking these lawsuits. This bill could lower the bar to the filing of lawsuits by military personnel or the filing of wrongful death lawsuits by their families.
Since 1952, police in Kentucky have been immune from lawsuits in the event that a car chase caused death or injury to third parties. Earlier this month, the state Supreme Court issued a ruling eliminating this blanket immunity and overturning its 67-year-old decision. The decision allowed a wrongful death lawsuit against two sheriffs for the death of a motorist.
Kentucky, like other states, has legal requirements for filing a medical malpractice lawsuit. Meeting these procedures is essential for a wrongful death or personal injury lawsuit when doctors or health care facilities provided substandard care. Otherwise, there may not be financial reckoning for medical harm.
The push-button ignition starter is a recent and popular innovation that allows motorists to keep their key-fobs in their pockets. However, this innovation has proven fatal in dozens of cases where people died from carbon monoxide inhalation after they forgot to push the starter button off. While this may be grounds for a wrongful death action, a bill was also introduced in the U.S. Senate addressing this danger.
The Kentucky state Supreme Court unanimously declared that the state's medical review panels, which required a panel evaluation of pending lawsuits, were unconstitutional. A constitutional amendment is being considered, which would re-establish these panels. However, medical review panels are not justified and do not improve the system for litigating wrongful death and other medical malpractice claims.
Drunk driving is not only a threat onshore and with cars. Drunk boating has also been a major factor in wrongful death in lakes and rivers in this country. It was uncovered that alcohol was the major contributor and the primary factor in 15 percent of fatal boating accident deaths in 2016. There were 4,500 boating accidents and more than 700 deaths in these accidents that year, according to the American Boating Association. People who have a blood alcohol content of at least 0.10 percent are 10 times more likely to be killed in a boating accident than sober boaters.