There are many different situations that can lead to a valid wrongful death claim. Most people probably think of motor vehicle accidents first and foremost leading to this type of claim, but there are other circumstances as well. Really, any time there is a personal injury situation that results in severe health consequences for the injured victim, there is a possibility that the case could become a wrongful death claim if the victims doesn’t survive.
As part of a wrongful death lawsuit, the surviving family members typically pursue financial compensation for a range of factors, including medical and funeral expenses and lost wages, among other damages. While it might be fairly simple to prove the amount of medical and funeral expenses by presenting bills and other documentation, it can be a bit more difficult to calculate lost wages as a part of the damages sought in a wrongful death claim.
Basics of lost wages
A basic conceptual premise of a wrongful death lawsuit is that the grieving family is saying that the defendant deprived them of a loved one who was essential to the family members’ well-being. The financial aspect of this concept is key, and that is where lost wages come into play. Obviously, the deceased person’s wages at the time of death can be determined quite easily, in most situations, but then there can be difficulty when attempting to extrapolate that out to what would have been that person’s expected future income. Would the person have received raises? Bonuses? What about retirement contributions?
As our readers can probably imagine, the math of calculating damages in a wrongful death case can become difficult in a hurry. If you are exploring the possibility of pursuing a wrongful death claim, just know that all potential damages should be considered as the case is filed. Lost wages, although sometimes difficult to calculate, should certainly be part of the plan.