There are three different situations that lead to wrongful death claims under New York law. Medical malpractice that costs someone’s life can lead to a wrongful death claim. So can tragedies that occur because of negligence. Finally, willful misconduct, such as breaking the law, can also create grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit.
New York families struggling with the sudden and unexpected loss of a loved one will have to deal with numerous practical consequences in addition to the emotional tumult that follows an unexpected death. Wrongful death claims allow family members to pursue compensation for several kinds of financial loss that their loved one’s death will likely cause.
What kind of compensation can surviving family members seek after the death of a family member?
Losses incurred prior to the death
The surviving family members have the right to take action on behalf of their deceased loved one. They can seek compensation for their medical expenses and any property damage losses they suffered before they died. Their pain and suffering can also contribute to what family members seek in civil court. Even their funeral and burial expenses can be part of the claim.
Losses related to employment
Family members provide direct financial support through their income and indirect support through their benefits. The dependents in the family can make a claim for a lifetime’s worth of income and benefits that their family member would have earned if they had survived. Such losses often constitute one of the biggest financial amounts that contribute to the value of the wrongful death claim.
Household losses with no set cost
A family member doesn’t just offer income. They also provide advice, emotional support, daily practical services and companionship. Some of those services, like caring for your children, will have a verifiable market value. Others, like their guidance and support, are intangible benefits that you must attempt to monetize for the purpose of your claim.
When you know what kinds of losses you can claim in your lawsuit, you will be better prepared to hold the other party accountable and seek the maximum amount of compensation given the circumstances. Learning more about wrongful death claims can empower those left behind after a tragedy.