What Damages Are Available in a Wrongful Death Claim?

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What Damages Are Available in a Wrongful Death Claim?

September 16, 2022
By Lafferty Gallagher Scott

Processing a wrongful death can be emotional and overwhelming. Oftentimes, individuals have questions regarding compensation and how those involved will be held responsible. At Lafferty, Gallagher, & Scott, LLC., we’re here to help you understand what damages are available in a wrongful death claim and guide you through the process. 

What Is a Wrongful Death?

Wrongful death is the passing of an individual as a  direct result of a negligent act of another. Wrongful death cases can occur in many ways, including car accidents, medical malpractice, workplace accidents, and criminal violence. A wrongful death claim is a way for affected individuals to seek compensation for expenses related to the death. A claim can also be filed for financial suffering inflicted due to the loss of the deceased’s income. 

How Does a Wrongful Death Claim Work?

Ohio classifies a wrongful death as either neglect or default made by another person. The varying meanings are used to refer to the ways that a wrongful death can occur. For example, a “wrongful act” is commonly associated with intentional acts of violence, such as assault. While “neglect” refers to legal negligence. Negligence occurs when someone breaches their legal duty of care and that breach leads to fatal injuries. Some common examples of negligence that lead to wrongful death include:

  • Drunk driving, aggressive driving, or distracted driving;
  • Malpractice of medical professionals, including in nursing home abuse cases;
  • Manufacturing defective or dangerous products
  • Having dangerous conditions on a property

Though it may be assumed that a surviving spouse or children file a wrongful death claim, this is not always the case. Typically, the individual who was left in charge of the deceased’s estate is responsible for filing a wrongful death claim. 

What Damages Are Available in the Claim?

Damages refer to the compensation that family members affected by the death receive due to the negligence. In a wrongful death claim, individuals can seek compensation for expenses related to the deceased individual and expenses that have now occurred as a result of the death. Damages that can be claimed from the individual’s death include but are not limited to: 

  • Calculations of the loss of income from the deceased in supporting the living spouse
  • Medical costs that resulted from the death, including any medical bills 
  • Funeral and burial expenses 

Those filing a wrongful death claim can also collect compensation for loss of consortium. This refers to the loss of companionship, love, and comfort that the deceased individual provided for their loved ones. Though not economic hardship, a judge will consider forms of compensation for the personal impact the death had on loved ones. In some cases, the amount of compensation you can receive for non-economic-related damages may be limited. There are no specified laws as to how much should be awarded for instances of loss of consortium. However, an individual can still file for a loss of consortium if they have been negatively affected by the loved one’s death. 

Contact Us Today

If you have questions about wrongful death claims in Ohio, contact our team today. Dealing with the death of a loved one is incredibly difficult, but we are here to guide you through the wrongful death claim process and ensure that your family gets the compensation you deserve.










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