How are damages calculated in wrongful death lawsuits?

FAQS About Wrongful Death Law

Although states have differing approaches to awarding monetary damages in wrongful death lawsuits, most of them share some principles in common.

The death must have been caused by the wrongful actions of another. Someone must take legal action in response. This person is typically a surviving spouse, parent or child of the person who has passed away. Aunts and uncles, cousins and people who act as parents (but are not biological or adoptive parents) are usually not eligible to recover under a wrongful death statute.

Courts award damages for wrongful death based on varying theories, depending on their jurisdiction. Theories of recovery in wrongful death lawsuits include pecuniary loss; this means that the defendant must compensate the plaintiff for the money that the deceased would have provided had he or she lived. The amount includes income, pension distributions and even services such as taking care of the children. Another theory of recovery permits the plaintiff to collect compensation for the loss of love, companionship and guidance of the deceased. This is especially relevant for children who have lost a parent. Some states allow punitive damages against the defendant as well.

Wrongful Death Trial Lawyers Serving Southern California

We understand that no amount of compensation can replace the loss of your loved one. But you do have the right to pursue recovery for expenses and for other damages in a civil action. If you lost someone you love in an accident, contact the wrongful death attorneys of Stolpman, Krissman, Elber & Silver, LLP, to arrange a free consultation. We work hard to help you find closure by getting you a fair settlement whenever possible, but our attorneys are expert trial lawyers that are prepared to file a lawsuit when it is necessary.

For a Free Consultation Call (562) 435-8300.

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