If the fatal accident occurred in West Virginia, then the beneficiaries will file a wrongful death lawsuit in West Virginia, even if they are not a resident of that state. There are state-specific guidelines and protocols wrongful death beneficiaries will have to follow, so it’s important for them to speak with an attorney to discuss the particulars of their case.
West Virginia Rules for Out-of-State Beneficiaries
The location of the accident or the defendant's residence determines where to file a wrongful death claim, not the beneficiaries’ residence. West Virginia law provides that personal representatives for out-of-state beneficiaries can bring a wrongful death suit to a West Virginia circuit court.
The personal representative of the beneficiaries – if appointed in another state – will have to pay a $100 surety bond to the courts as a promise that they will follow all the laws and proceedings required by West Virginia.
Specifically, West Virginia Code §55-7-6 provides: “If the personal representative was duly appointed in another state…such personal representative shall, at the time of filing of the complaint, post bond with a corporate surety thereon authorized to do business in this state, in the sum of one hundred dollars, conditioned that such personal representative shall pay all costs adjudged against him or her and that he or she shall comply with the provisions of this section.”
The statues also say that the court has the authority to increase or decrease the surety bond if there is good cause.
Hire an Attorney if Filing for Wrongful Death Out of State
If you recently lost a loved one in an accident in West Virginia, speak with an attorney in the state about your legal options, even if you live out-of-state. An attorney will be able to determine whether or not your loved one’s death meets the elements of wrongful death claim and take the steps necessary to pursue a settlement.
For a wrongful death attorney in Clarksburg, WV, call the Miley Legal Group. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation legal consultation: (304) 326-1800.