Damages in a wrongful death case typically fall into two broad categories, which are generally defined by two distinct time periods.
The first category permits recovery of damages experienced by the deceased from the moment of the negligent act causing the death, until the time of the decedent’s death. As an example, in the case of a car accident, this would cover the time from the occurrence of the crash until the deceased person’s eventual death stemming from their accident injuries. That could occur hours, or even weeks after the accident. The particular damages in this category might include medical expenses, the deceased’s person’s mental and physical pain and suffering, the deceased’s lost wages, and funeral and burial expenses.
The second broad category of damages covers those losses experienced by the next of kin after the deceased’s death. This category of damages is meant to compensate the family survivors for their financial losses. The laws of the various states indicate that these damages are generally intended to replace the value of money the deceased would have earned were it not for the untimely death. It includes the lost wages that would have been earned until the deceased’s anticipated retirement.
Some states also allow claims for “loss of consortium,” where a spouse or immediate family members are deprived of the deceased’s love and companionship. This is particularly significant where an adult parent dies and leaves behind minor children who are deprived of the guidance from the parent.
Contact The McLeod Firm’s law office in St. Augustine, Florida. We provide a free initial consultation that will give you the opportunity to meet us and get a sense of whether we are the right firm to handle your case. We handle wrongful death lawsuits on a contingency fee basis; that means you pay no attorney’s fees until we recover money for you. Call us today: 904-471-5007