Compensation for Damages in Wrongful Death Cases
By Michael Verna on November 11, 2016
Everyday, countless individuals sustain serious injuries from accidents such as car crashes, slips and falls, or physical assault. While these injuries can affect victims in the long-term, nothing can compare to the damages that are incurred when a wrongful death occurs. A wrongful death is one that is the direct result of another person’s negligent actions, or willful intent to harm. When a life is lost in this manner, family members are left with few resources. These deaths are sudden, and provide surviving family members with no way to prepare for a future without their loved one.
The damages in wrongful death cases are often severe, and include financial losses, emotional pain and suffering, and a loss of support and companionship from the family member that was lost. It is impossible to quantify the losses associated with the death of a loved one. However, the wrongful death attorneys at Bowles & Verna LLP will fight for just compensation for damages in wrongful death cases for our Walnut Creek, CA clients.
Types of Wrongful Death Damages
A wrongful death lawsuit is a way for surviving family members (typically the spouse or children of the deceased) to seek compensation from the person or party that caused the wrongful death of their loved one. The damages in a wrongful death lawsuit can typically be broken down into two broad categories: losses that occurred between the negligent act and the victim’s death, and those that were suffered (and will be suffered) by the family after the decedent passed away.
When an accident leads to wrongful death, the death is rarely immediate. In most cases, the victim suffers an injury and is treated or hospitalized in an attempt to save his or her life. The actual death may take place hours, days, or even weeks after the initial injury. During this time, the injury victim is likely to suffer damages. These include medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages. Once the decedent has passed, surviving family members can seek compensation for these damages through a wrongful death lawsuit.
The most common damages in a wrongful death lawsuit are those that are rewarded to compensate for the losses suffered by surviving family members. These include compensation for financial losses and emotional losses. Next of kin are due compensation for financial losses that include the income that would have been earned by the deceased during his or her lifetime, as well as any retirement benefits that would have been earned. Emotional losses, which are classified as a loss of consortium, compensate surviving family members for their loss of companionship and emotional support. These losses are especially common in cases where young children have suffered the loss of a parent.
If you have lost a loved one to wrongful death, it is important to learn your legal rights. Our attorneys understand the laws surrounding wrongful death cases. We will examine each case to determine what types of damages have been suffered. Our goal is to maximize compensation for our clients so they have fewer financial worries in the aftermath of such a significant family loss. To learn how we can help you collect just compensation for your losses, contact us at your earliest convenience.