Damages in Wrongful Death Cases
While a lawsuit cannot bring your loved one back, it may be necessary to manage your current and future finances. The compensation from a wrongful death case may help your family avoid financial distress following this loss. Contact us at Kisling, Nestico & Redick today for help with a wrongful death claim.
When you have suffered a sudden and traumatic loss, it can be intimidating and confusing to hear about wrongful death claims. The mere mention of a lawsuit raises questions regarding if and when you can file a claim.
One of the reasons you may benefit from moving forward with a legal claim following your loved one’s death is because of the potential financial outcome. Your injuries following your loved one’s sudden death may entitle you and your other surviving family members to receive compensation. While a lawsuit cannot bring your loved one back, it may be necessary to manage your current and future finances. The compensation from a wrongful death case may help your family avoid financial distress following this loss. It can also help you prepare for a more secure future.
To learn more about damages in wrongful death cases and whether a wrongful death claim is right for you and your family, contact us at Kisling, Nestico & Redick right away.
Call us at 1-800-HURT-NOW, or contact us for a free and confidential case consultation.
What is a Wrongful Death Case?
Based on Ohio Statute §2125.01, you may be entitled to wrongful death damages if you lost a loved one in an accident caused by another person or business’s negligence, recklessness, or intentional misconduct. When another party is at fault for your parent, spouse, or child’s death, the personal representative of your loved one’s estate may have the right to file a wrongful death claim and pursue compensation for the financial and emotional losses resulting from your loved one’s death. If the estate is successful in reaching a settlement with the at-fault party or their insurer, then the compensation is distributed to the surviving family members.
Damages in a Wrongful Death Case
Damages refer to a specific injury or loss that you can be compensated for. In general, damages can refer to physical, psychological, and financial injuries. During a wrongful death case, you have a number of potential damages resulting from emotional harm and economic loss.
You may seek compensation for economic damages, including:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Medical expenses sustained prior to your loved one’s death
- Loss of the individual’s income
- Loss of the individual’s benefits like health insurance or a pension
- Loss of a prospective inheritance from that family member
You also may pursue compensation for non-economic damages, including:
- Mental anguish
- Loss of your loved one’s services like housework and childcare
- Loss of companionship and society
- Loss of consortium, which is the intimate relationship between spouses
Punitive damages are extremely rare in Ohio wrongful death cases. Punitive damages are not intended to compensate you and your family for your loss. Instead, they are meant to punish the individual who caused your loved one harm, and prevent them from behaving in a similar fashion again.
Punitive damages are only awarded if the defendant’s behavior was more than careless. Their behavior would have to have been malicious or had to have shown a disregard for human life. Only if the defendant’s actions were particularly egregious or abhorrent would it be possible for you to obtain punitive damages through a wrongful death claim.
Who Can Recover Damages
Ohio law assumes the decedent’s surviving parents, spouse, and children have been injured and can recover compensation. This means the personal representative will only seek compensation for injuries suffered by surviving parents, spouses, and children. Other family members, including grandparents, siblings, and unmarried romantic partners are not entitled to compensation, but can claim they have suffered “compensable loss,” and claim they have a right to compensation.
The Difference Between a Wrongful Death and Survival Action in Ohio
A wrongful death suit is a legal cause of action that arises when a person is killed by another party’s carelessness, recklessness, or intentional misconduct. A survival action is a legal claim that arises due to the injuries suffered by the decedent.
During a wrongful death suit, the personal representative seeks compensation for the family member’s economic and non-economic injuries. However, in a survival action, the personal representative pursues compensation for the decedent’s injuries that occurred prior to their death. The potential compensation under a survival action will depend on the specific cause of action. However, if the personal representative moves forward with the claim, they may pursue compensation for medical expenses and pain and suffering.
How Our Ohio Wrongful Death Lawyers Can Help
If you lost your parent, spouse, or child in an accident, do not hesitate to reach out to the experienced wrongful death attorneys of Kisling, Nestico & Redick for an objective legal opinion. It can be difficult to tell while you are grieving whether wrongful death suit would be the right decision for the family. We are here to review your situation, investigate the accident that led to your loved one’s death, and to determine whether you have the right to move forward with a wrongful death claim. We will thoroughly explain your rights, legal options, and potential outcomes so you can make an informed decision on what to do next.
If you choose to move forward with a wrongful death claim, we can discuss your family’s damages and potential compensation. Many economic losses are relatively easy to calculate. However, there are numerous methods for calculating non-economic damages such as mental anguish and loss of companionship.
To discuss your situation, call us at 1-800-HURT-NOW or contact us to schedule a free and confidential consultation.