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Understanding the Legal Process of Wrongful Death Claims

 Posted on January 10, 2024 in Personal Injury

Blog ImageCalculating damages in a wrongful death case can be a complex process. The goal of a wrongful death action is to provide compensation to surviving family members for the losses they have suffered due to the death of their loved one. There are specific laws that govern these cases and stipulate the guidelines that should be used to determine how damages should be calculated. Understanding the legal process is important for anyone involved, and it is why it is crucial to have a skilled Illinois wrongful death lawyer navigating you through this process.

Damages in a Wrongful Death Case

Wrongful death claims can arise from various situations, including medical malpractice, car accidents, workplace accidents, and more. When a person's death is caused by the negligence or recklessness of another party or parties, the surviving family members have the legal right to seek compensation for their losses.

Three different categories of damages may be awarded in a wrongful death lawsuit:

Economic Damages

Economic damages are the quantifiable financial losses that the family suffers as a result of the death. These can include medical bills related to the deceased person's final medical care, funeral and burial expenses, and loss of financial support that the deceased would have provided to their family. Lost income and benefits, as well as any potential future earnings, are also considered.

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages cover the emotional toll the death has taken on the surviving family members. These may include pain and suffering, loss of companionship, grief, and mental anguish. Calculating non-economic damages can be challenging since there are no concrete dollar amounts to attach to these losses. Courts often rely on expert testimony and evidence to assess these damages.

Punitive Damage

In some cases, punitive damages may be awarded when the at-fault party’s actions or behavior were especially egregious. These damages are intended to punish the at-fault and send a message to “society” that this conduct is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.

Calculating damages in a wrongful death case can be highly contentious, as both sides may dispute the extent of the losses and the appropriate compensation. Expert witnesses, such as economists and mental health professionals, are often called upon to provide testimony and help establish the value of the damages.

Contact a Lombard, IL Personal Injury Lawyer for Legal Justice

Ultimately, the goal of calculating damages in a wrongful death case is to provide fair compensation to the surviving family members for the losses they have endured. While no amount of money can ever replace a lost loved one, it can help ease the financial burdens associated with their death and provide a measure of justice to those left behind.

If you have lost a loved one, call Mevorah & Giglio Law Offices at 630-932-9100 to schedule a free consultation with one of our dedicated Naperville, IL wrongful death attorneys and find out what legal recourse you may have for your family’s losses.

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