9th Circuit: Wrongful Death Claim Cannot Arise Before Death, Even If Cause of Death Is Anticipated – Law.com

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“Federal law supports the proposition that accrual of a wrongful death claim occurs on the date of death, not the date of the seaman’s prior injury, or on a date beyond death when the cause of death is discovered,” the appellate panel said, reversing the dismissal of a wrongful death suit brought by the wife a seaman who died from asbestos exposure.
May 10, 2022 at 02:00 PM
5 minute read
Wrongful Death
Following the lead of several other federal circuits, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed the dismissal of a wrongful death claim under the admiralty jurisdiction after holding that the claim can only accrue on or after the death of the seaman, not before.
Sherri Deem appealed to the Ninth Circuit after the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington said her wrongful death claim for her husband’s death had expired under a three-year statute of limitations.

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