Losing a loved one in an accident is a very painful process. It hurts a lot to learn that your family member, friend, or spouse would be alive if it weren’t for the negligence of another party. Fortunately, the law allows you or any other surviving family member to file a wrongful death action for compensation for your loss. While no amount of money can replace the life of a loved one, filing a lawsuit allows the surviving members to recover lost finances accruing from medical bills and other costs that the deceased incurred before passing away, including any financial support the deceased was providing.

At Lone Star Injury Attorneys, it’s our business to hold the at-fault party responsible for the loss of your loved one and the anguish that follows thereafter. We understand that it takes forever for the pain to go away, and that grieving is always part of the healing process. But while you focus on your emotional recovery, you may feel unable to file the case as soon as possible when it feels like you’re trading their life for money. Unfortunately, the law has a statute of limitations, a period within which you must file a wrongful death action for consideration. If this period lapses, you will lose your legal rights altogether.  However, with the help of a diligent fatal accident attorney, you could pursue a claim. If you wish to learn more about damages in Pearland wrongful death actions, reach out to our firm as soon as possible.

What is a Wrongful Death Action?

A wrongful death action is a claim or lawsuit filed by the surviving family members (or any other lawful person) for the death of a person. In most cases, death is a result of a negligent, reckless, or intentional act of another person. A common example of a negligent act resulting in a wrongful death action is distracted driving.

There are many types of damages that you can claim in a fatal accident claim in Pearland. Most often, they are based on the financial losses suffered before and after the loss of your loved one. They can be categorized into three major categories—economic, non-economic, and punitive.

Recovering Economic Damages for a Fatal Accident

Economic damages are losses to which a monetary value can be attached. This type of damages factor in all financial losses suffered by the deceased or family members from the time of the accident until the would-be natural death of the deceased. In some cases, they also include the indirect losses or benefits that the immediate family members such as spouses and children lack by losing their loved ones. Generally, economic damages include:

  • Medical Bills
  • Funeral Expenses
  • Loss of Benefits
  • Loss of Future Income
  • Lost Wages
  • Loss of Future Inheritance
  • Loss of Financial Support

The economic damages recoverable in a wrongful death action are similar to compensation available in a personal injury lawsuit. But in this case, the plaintiff acts on behalf of the deceased to claim damages that he or she would have been entitled to had he or she survived the accident.

Non-Economic Damages in Pearland

Non-economic damages are intangible losses that the deceased suffered before his or her death. Any other intangible loss suffered by the deceased’s immediate family is also taken into account. Sadly, establishing a monetary value for this type of damages is often challenging. It requires the input of highly skilled lawyers with the help of expert witnesses. If successful, you may recover damages for:

  • The deceased’s pain and suffering before passing away
  • The deceased’s emotional anguish before passing away
  • Pain and suffering of the surviving family members
  • Emotional trauma for the spouse, children, and family
  • Loss of consortium
  • Loss of affection
  • Loss of parental care and guidance

It can be difficult to calculate and recover non-economic damages for your wrongful death action, so hiring an experienced lawyer can be beneficial.

When are Punitive Damages Available?

Depending on your fatal accident case, you may also recover punitive damages. And unlike economic and non-economic damages, punitive damages are not meant to make you whole again. On the contrary, they are meant to punish the defendant or the at-fault party for their wrongdoing. You may only qualify for this type of damages award in certain circumstances.

Who Can Recover Compensation in a Pearland Wrongful Death Action?

It is important to understand that not everyone can file a claim for losing their loved one. Wrongful death actions are filed by surviving beneficiaries or relatives of the deceased person. This right is often awarded to the deceased’s:

  • Spouse
  • Parents
  • Children

Although these are the direct beneficiaries of the monetary compensation awarded in a wrongful death case, the formal legal action must be undertaken by a trusted or personal representative of the deceased.

Contact Our Experienced Attorneys to Discuss Damages in Pearland Wrongful Death Actions

If you recently lost a loved one, we understand that access to finances may be your only way for survival, especially if he or she was your sole breadwinner. For this reason, we will direct our resources to have the most positive outcome for your cause. With the help of a skilled lawyer, you could recover damages in a Pearland wrongful death action. To help us bring closure to your case, call us to schedule an appointment today.