If you are in a position where you can file a wrongful death lawsuit, you probably have a lot on your mind and a lot of questions. Having a loved one die is one of the most difficult things someone can go through, so it is hard to think about undertaking legal action. One of the most common and important questions is what damages can be claimed in a wrongful death lawsuit. There are three types of damages that can be in any kind of lawsuit. Additionally, all damages in wrongful death cases can be boiled down into two categories. This guide will explain everything you need to know.
The three types of damages are:
- Special compensatory damages
- General compensatory damages
- Punitive damages
All financial losses are special compensatory damages. Essentially, if you can name an exact amount of money that you, the deceased, or the deceased’s family lost as a result of the wrongful death, it will fall into this category.
General compensatory damages are similar but account for all non-financial losses. The judge will assign a value to all general compensatory damages. Finally, punitive damages represent an amount of money the judge may order the defendant to pay as punishment for irresponsible behavior. It is very common for all three types of damages to be involved in a wrongful death lawsuit.
Wrongful Death Damages
Because you have no control over punitive damages, you can ignore them in your case. In the end, punitive damages may be a pleasant surprise for you. You need to claim general and special compensatory damages, however. Some general and special damages represent suffering the deceased experienced, and some general and special damages represent suffering the deceased’s loved ones suffered. These are the two ways you can categorize damages in wrongful death lawsuits.
You can think of your wrongful death lawsuit as you filing a personal injury lawsuit on the behalf of the deceased. Because this is the case, you can claim everything that you could claim in a personal injury suit, including hospital bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, disfigurement, loss of earning ability, emotional turmoil, and more. To reiterate, these are damages the deceased suffered prior to death.
In addition to these claims, you can also claim losses that you or your loved ones are suffering, which can include loss of financial support, emotional turmoil, damage to property, funeral and burial costs, and more. It can be very helpful to speak with an attorney, like a Wrongful Death Lawyer, in Lakewood FL from David & Philpot, P.L.,to get all your claims organized.