The death of a loved one surely leaves emotional damage to the family members and friends. Death is something people don’t even think about before it happens, especially in accidents. Because they are not able to prepare for it, people are left devastated after something like this occurs. Not only that something like this devastates the family emotionally, in some cases, but it also leaves an extreme financial burden.
There are a plethora of different types of damages you can apply for in a wrongful death claim. As you can imagine, different states have different regulations when it comes to situations like these. Sometimes it can happen that these damages do not depend on this kind of cause. In most cases, they depend only on the financial loss by the damage caused. However, a wrongful death claim is something entirely different.
These claims are brought against a person guilty of causing a death of a person. It doesn’t matter what caused it, intentional action or negligence. In case you require a consultation for future legal action, then you should pay a visit to Powers & Santola, where you will receive all the necessary information regarding these situations.
It is of the utmost importance to talk with an attorney who has experience in this field. Now, we would like to talk about types of compensation for a wrongful death claim. Let’s take a look at what you can expect.
What’s a Wrongful Death Case?
We are talking about a civil action activated by the estate or survivors of an individual who has lost its life in an accident caused by the negligence of another person. We’ve mentioned the fact that every state has its own regulation in this case and the requirements for people to make these claims are different.
So, before someone can take any kind of legal action, conducting serious research about the possibilities in their native state is an absolute must. Once again, we can see that consulting a skilled attorney who has a lot of experience in this field of law. These rules often specify when something like this can be filed and what kind of damages can be expected to be recovered.
What Are the Types of Compensation?
Let’s take a look at the types of compensation.
1. Compensation for the Deceased’s Family
Without a doubt, the surviving family members suffer noteworthy pain and grief because the loved one is no longer with them. The whole purpose of this claim is for the family of a deceased person to receive compensation with a financial award. In case the attorney has managed to win the case, the court will issue a certain amount of money to the family members who have survived.
There are a couple of different types of compensation. The first one we would like to mention is the loss of expected economic support from the person who lost its life. The second one is the worth of household services that a late person would provide. Last but not least, the financial compensation will be calculated based on the affection, moral support, love, and guidance that the person would provide to their closest relatives. Most of the time, the claim would be issued only by close family members.
For instance, a cousin couldn’t claim this. Instead, only children, domestic partners, surviving spouses, and other personas who have been already included in the line of succession, like parents or close siblings outside the family. All other claims will simply not be possible to be executed down the road. Therefore, consulting with an attorney about this question is one of the most important questions before making one of these.
2. Damages for the Deceased’s Estate
After a person passes away as a result of an accident caused by another person, it can incur certain costs that the estate will need to pay for. Of course, the court will see to it that the person is compensated the estate for the cost of the funeral, burial, and possible medical bills. This can include hospital expenses if the person required care due to the illness or an injury it suffered.
In most cases, the court will decide to obligate the defendant to provide funds for the value of income lost after the person passed away. We are talking about the compensation that reimburses the income the deceased would earn in case they lived long enough. Plus, the family can expect compensation for all the lost salaries the deceased would receive during the recovery period that preceded the death.
3. Punitive Damages
The least common type of compensation is punitive damages. It means that the victims are awarded punitive damage from the party that caused the death of their family members. However, what makes this one different from others is that its aim is not to provide compensation to the surviving members of the individual who lost their life.
We are talking about this type of financial punishment that the court orders the perpetrator to pay in case of extreme negligence, and recklessness, or to intentionally kill or harm the victim. In some states, the amount of money asked from the perpetrator cannot be higher than the double amount of economic damage awarded, which usually amounts to half a million US dollars.
When Can You File It?
In some cases, people who have lost a family member for the reasons we’ve mentioned above will be eligible for a full settlement. But what many people don’t understand is that some states have a time limit after which people cannot file a claim like this. For example, in case you experience something like this in California, you will have two years to act.
In case someone decides to act after two years have passed. Chances are that the court will completely dismiss the lawsuit in question, and is not possible to expect any kind of settlement. You can be sure that the lawyer you choose will provide you with the best possible service and do their best to help you win your case. While it can be hard sometimes, it is certainly not impossible.