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Wrongful death lawyers

Medical negligence

Losing a loved one can be a very difficult and emotional time. Unfortunately, it can bring the added pressure of financial strain or the infliction of significant psychological impact. If you believe your loved one’s premature passing was caused by the actions or negligence of a nurse, doctor or hospital, you may have a claim for compensation. 

Wrongful death compensation claims 

Medical negligence is when a person has been harmed or injured as a result of the actions (or a failure to act) of a medical practitioner or facility. 

An untimely death of your loved one caused by medical negligence, the care or treatment they received, needs to be proven to fall below the accepted standard of practice in Australia. 

Although bringing a claim for compensation can never make up for what happened, it may help you to reclaim financial stability, access practical support around your home, or secure mental health support. Our experienced and understanding medical negligence lawyers will be able to provide you with tailored advice about your legal rights and help you through each step of the claims process to access the compensation you deserve. 

Types of Wrongful Death Claims 

There are two types of claims for the wrongful death of a loved one that Shine’s specialist medical negligence lawyers can help you with: dependency claims and claims for mental harm caused by the unexpected death. 

Dependency claims 

A spouse or a dependant of the loved one is eligible to make a clam for dependency. These claims are made for the loss of financial income to the family home and for loss of services to family members.  

  • Loss of the income your loved one bought into the household and the household relied on for paying bills, buying groceries, mortgage repayments etc.; and 

  • The care and assistance your loved one contributed to the family/household, for example doing housework, helping kids with their homework or doing the school runs, cooking dinner, mowing the lawn etc. 

Claim for mental harm 

A claim for mental harm is made by a family member who has suffered a diagnosable psychiatric injury caused by the untimely and unexpected death of their loved one. 

Some examples of what you can claim include: 

  • Medical and mental health expenses; 

  • Financial loss or loss of earnings; 

  • Pain and suffering; and 

  • Loss of enjoyment of life 

Continuing your loved one's claim after they have passed away 

Sometimes a loved one passes away after a medical negligence claim has commenced, and we are asked if this means the end of the claim or if a family member can continue it on their behalf. The claim can be progressed, now by your loved one’s Estate. 

As with other medical negligence claims, it needs to be proven that the wrongful death was caused by an act or omission by the medical practitioner or facility that falls below accepted Australian standards. 

In these situations, the law limits the types of compensation that can be claimed to past loses. For example, economic loss, care and assistance provided to the loved one and out-of-pocket expenses from the date of injury to the date of death. 

Shine Lawyers has a team of carefully selected medical negligence claim lawyers who have the experience and understanding to help you through this difficult time and seek the compensation you deserve. We will take care of the legal side of things for you, so you can focus on your family. 

You may be entitled to claim compensation. Start the process with our simple and free online tool.

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What we will ask:

  • Question to help us understand your experience and how your life has been impacted. Your responses will help us define the best course of action for your claim.

What happens next:

  • Either book a no obligation appointment with a medical negligence legal expert right away or,

  • Speak with our team about your options

How Shine can help

We have helped thousands of Australians right wrong and access more than $1 billion per year in entitlements and compensation through our expert services. 

95% of the cases we represent are settled without the stress of going to court. 

We offer access to affordable legal advice including on a No Win, No Fee* basis and an obligation-free initial consultation so you can understand your rights and know where you stand. 

We are ready to take action, supporting your choice to hold negligent healthcare and medical partitioners to account and right wrong. 

*Conditions apply 


Is there a medical negligence lawyer near me?

With more than 40 branches across Australia and 1000+ team members, location is no barrier when it comes to accessing Shine Lawyers legal advice and support. 

If you’d like to speak to our Medical Negligence team in person, you can see our full list of locations here

If you aren‘t able to find a location near you, we can easily arrange an obligation-free virtual appointment or discuss the option to meet at a location that’s comfortable and convenient for you. No matter where you are located, we will always provide the same, expert advice and manage your claim with the same level of quality and commitment. 

Why trust Shine to be my medical negligence lawyers?

At Shine Lawyers, we put your first. We’ve been standing up for the rights of everyday Australians for over 45 years. As one of Australia’s largest litigation law firms, we are here to help you get the justice you deserve. 

Our empathy, understanding and expertise is why we’re ahead of the pack. We’ll stand with you and guide you through every step of the way.

How much compensation can I claim for a wrongful death?

When you add up the different things you can claim for, the total amount of compensation can be a significant sum, especially where there is financial hardship following the death of a loved one as it makes a difference to future financial security. 

All family circumstances are different, however, once your experienced medical negligence lawyer has a comprehensive understanding of your potential claim, they may be able to estimate the amount of compensation you are entitled to seek.

What kind of evidence do I need for a successful claim?

Your claim needs to prove that your loved one’s death was caused by the negligence of the medical practitioner or facility, in other words, it could have been prevented if the medical practitioner acted or performed the procedure within their required duty of care. 

Your dedicated lawyer will investigate the circumstances around your loved one’s unexpected death with the help of medical experts (as needed) to put together the evidence needed for your claim.

What time limits apply?

Time limits vary depending on the state in which the negligence occurred. In some states, pre-court timescales also apply. Should you wish to investigate a potential claim you should do so as early as possible, and within three years from the date if the death.

Do you have a claim?  

We’re here to make the claims process as simple and stress-free as possible.

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