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Can i sue the person who murdered my sons father for wrongful death

Atlanta, GA |

My sons father was murdered and the perpetrator then took his own life. Can i sue his estate or any of his family for wrongful death. This happened in Tennessee.

Attorney Answers 7

  1. Contact the Tennessee Bar Association for a free referral to a pre-screened wrongful death atty. right away. They have a referral office in East, West and Middle Tennessee and will give you the phone number you need. Just google the words Teenessee Bar Association. You can also address this question to a Tenn. wrongful atty. here on Avvo.

    Disclaimer: This response is provided to you for educational and informational purposes only and no attorney-client relationship has been created hereby. Other attorneys may have different opinions or responses. If you found this response helpful, please indicate Best Answer to Avvo. Thank you.

  2. I am sorry to hear of this strategy. In theory the estate of the perpetrator can be sued for wrongful death. The problem often is, does the estate have any money? Also, wrongful death cases are highly technical and generally have short statutes of limitations. Speak to a personal injury lawyer about the specifics of your case. Such consultations are generally free.

    Any opinions stated in response to Avvo questions are based upon the facts stated in the question. Responses to Avvo questions are for general information purposes only, and should not be construed or relied upon as legal advice.

  3. the previous lawyer answers are correct and i too am sorry for your and your son's loss. i just want to add that if the murder occured at a buisness , depending on the circumstances there may be a claim against the buisness for negligent security or if the father was on the job then a workers comp claim.

  4. In Georgia, an action for wrongful death needs to be brought by or on behalf of someone who is the next of kin to the deceased. In this instance, your son would be at least one of the next of kin, and a suit could be brought on his behalf if he is a minor or under guardianship, and by him directly if he is of majority. However, you should check with a lawyer in Tennessee to see if the same rules apply there. Also, depending on where he was killed and the residency of the parties, the case may need to be brought where it happened or even in Federal Court, so we would need more details to determine that.
    Finally, a successfully prosecuted wrongful death claim can result in a large judgment, but it would do you son little good and a lot of costs if the defendant was insolvent. In other words, does the defendant's estate have any value? If not, you may be going to a lot of trouble for nothing.

    The above information is general in nature. In order to obtain more specific and legal advice upon which to base your important decisions, please contact our office directly for a free phone or in person consultation. Robert M. Gardner, Jr. Hicks, Massey & Gardner, LLP 53 W. Candler St. Or 718 Oak St. Winder, Ga. 30680 Gainesville, Georgia (770) 307-4899 (770) 538-0555 serving metro Atlanta and all of Northeast Georgia Bankruptcy, Divorce, Personal Injury, Worker’s Compensation, Medical Malpractice, Adoption, Civil and Criminal Litigation

  5. More information is needed to evaluate. Contact a local wrongful death lawyer to investigate.

  6. You've received a lot of good information already, and I'll echo what others have said. Leaving aside the issue of who has the right to bring suit, the bigger question is whether the decedent (murderer) has any assets that would make a suit worthwhile. All of us (wrongful death attorneys) work on a contingency basis, so we earn our fee only when we recover funds. If the decedent has nothing to recover from, you would essentially have to pay an attorney his hourly rate upfront to get him to accept your case, or he would have to do it for free.

    If the decedent has assets and assuming you can prove he murdered your son's father, it is an easy case to prove.

    For more information, contact us at or (770) 984-5380. The initial consultation is always free. This post is intended to provide general guidance, and should not be construed as legal advice. While I am an attorney, unless we sign a retainer agreement, I am not your attorney, and any information shared on Avvo does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please mark this answer as "Helpful" or "Best Answer" if you like it.

  7. I would need more info to give you a better answer, but I'm licensed in both TN and GA so give me a call or email me to discuss it.

    ↓ Mark this answer as "Helpful" or "Best Answer" if you like it. For more information, contact us at or (404) 835-7595. The initial consultation is always free for Avvo users.

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