No one expects to lose a loved one in a fatal motor vehicle accident -- or in any kind of unexpected accident. However, these kinds of tragedies strike Louisville families from time to time. When they happen, close family members will want answers; they'll also want legal justice.
Although no amount of litigation, and no amount of financial compensation, will ever be enough to right the wrong of a loved one killed in an accident that wasn't his or her fault, financial compensation is the only way our legal system has of attempting to make surviving close family members whole after such an incident. However, in order to receive a financial recovery after losing a loved one, family members will generally need to take proactive action to pursue a wrongful death claim in civil court.
What kind of financial compensation can wrongful death plaintiffs pursue
In a favorable wrongful death settlement or court decision, surviving close family members might be able to receive compensation regarding a variety of damage categories. For example, this compensation might include:
Loss of income and financial support: Imagine a father of three passes away at the height of his career. He was earning $300,000 a year and had at least 10 more working years ahead of him. This represents a lot of income that close family members have missed out on benefiting from. These family members who were relying on this financial support to pay for their home, college educations and future inheritances, can pursue the loss of this family income in a wrongful death suit.
Pain and suffering experienced by the decedent: Imagine that a catastrophic vehicle accident left the victim with terrible injuries. Before he or she died of these injuries at a later time, the victim experienced tremendous pain and suffering. Wrongful death plaintiffs can seek compensation for this suffering experienced by their loved one in some cases.
Medical bills incurred by the victims: Prior to the death of the victim, he or she might have received costly medical care. These costs, which represent debts to be paid by the victim's estate, could be pursued in a wrongful death action.
Loss of companionship and consortium: The husbands, wives and/or children of people killed in fatal accidents will be forced to endure the loss of companionship, loss of spousal services, loss of marital benefits and loss of love and affection. These losses are compensable.
Did your loved one die in an accident that wasn't his or her fault?
The facts and circumstances surrounding every fatal accident are always different. However, if another party's negligence or unlawful behavior caused the accidental death of your close relative, you might want to learn more about your legal rights and options.