Coming Soon: No Estate Necessary for Most Wrongful Death Actions

May 23, 2018 § 1 Comment

House Bill 1091, which has been signed by the Governor and takes effect July 1, 2018, amends the wrongful death statute (MCA § 11-7-13) as follows:

Any widow, husband, child, father, mother, sister or brother of the deceased or unborn quick child, or interested party may bring an action pursuant to the provisions of this section outside an estate, regardless of whether there are real or personal assets of an estate.

That should be welcome news to you PI lawyers out there who would prefer to take blood thinners and then dive into a swimming pool full of hungry leeches rather than have to deal with a chancellor.

It is equally welcome news to us chancellors who too often wind up having to chase PI lawyers all over kingdom come to try to get them to tend to their usually delinquent probate matters.

§ One Response to Coming Soon: No Estate Necessary for Most Wrongful Death Actions

  • John H. (Zeke) Downey says:

    Well, Judge, you called this right. As a general practitioner who used to have plaintiff’s cases before they all went to the boys who advertise and send out solicitation letters, I do hate to handle an estate, even though I sometimes try if there are few assets or if I think the beneficiaries will all sign off on agreed orders waiving everything. Chancellors can be so picky!

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