Who can be awarded Wrongful death damages
The death of a loved one takes a huge emotional toll on their family members, plus it can also lead to enormous financial hardships. When the death of the person is caused by the negligence or wrongful conduct of another, the surviving relatives of the deceased could seek wrongful death damages.
Every state has a set of rules that specifies how a wrongful death claim should proceed, including rules about who can file the claim and how to do it according to the state’s court system.
The laws of each state determine the means to ease the burdens, both financial and emotional when a person or entity is found legally responsible for someone’s death.
There are different types of compensation (known as “damages”) that can be awarded if the deceased’s relatives win the wrongful death lawsuit.
Who Can Be Awarded Damages?
When determining the types of damages that can be awarded in a wrongful death lawsuit, the court has to look at all the different factors that surround the deceased person, their death, and their relationships with the different surviving members of the family.
Typically, damages can be awarded to:
- Spouses – in most cases, the surviving spouse can sue for the lost companionship and support caused by the deceased’s death, as well as for their own emotional trauma as a result of the death of their spouse.
- Children – loss comfort and support and the lost benefits of their relationship with their dead parent can be awarded as damages to minor children.
- Parents – if a minor child dies as a result of wrongful death, their parents can recover damages for emotional trauma and the loss of relationship with their child.
Depending on the circumstances surrounding the person’s death, the court handling the case can also award punitive damages in addition to general damages to the surviving family of the deceased.
Punitive damages are awarded where the deceased person’s death was caused in a particularly reckless or egregious type of conduct. Punitive damages are designed to punish the defendant and to deter similar behavior in the future.
Different states have different procedures for obtaining damages , so if you believe your loved one was wrongfully killed, you should consult a wrongful death attorney in your state.
More on Wrongful Death:
- What is an Accidental death attorney?
- What is an accidental death lawyer?
- Why You Need the Best Wrongful Death Attorney
- Unlawful Death Lawsuits in California
- What You Should Know Before Filing for Wrongful Death
- 3 Common Types of Wrongful Death Claims
- Wrongful Death Damages You Can Recover
- California Wrongful Death Law - Top things you should know
- Wrongful Death Lawsuit vs. Murder Cases
- The Basic Elements of Wrongful Death Litigation
- Finding the Best Wrongful Death Attorney
- How a Wrongful Death Claim Works
- Pursuing Wrongful Death Settlements
- Recoverable Wrongful Death Damages in California
- Seeking Wrongful Death Settlements
- Suing for Wrongful Death in California
- What is a Wrongful Death Lawyer?
- Who can be awarded Wrongful death damages
- Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?
- Wrongful Death Damages
- Wrongful Death Negligence: the basics
- Receiving and Distributing Wrongful Death Settlements
- A Brief Overview of the Wrongful Death Litigation Process
- Available Defenses against Wrongful Death Lawsuits
- Quick Q&A on Wrongful Death Litigation
Haddad & Sherwin LLP has a long, successful track record winning wrongful death and other serious civil rights claims for police and jail officer misconduct, throughout Northern and Central California. Call or email us for a free consultation.