When the family breadwinner dies in a car crash, the results can be emotionally and financially devastating. Their family is left wondering how they will pay the bills and heal emotionally without their loved one in their life. It is a tragic situation no one wants to be in. In such situations, some families choose to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit.
The basics of wrongful death
Wrongful death lawsuits are a type of personal injury claim. Under Connecticut law, a personal representative of the estate brings a wrongful death suit on behalf of the family. You have two years from the date of death to bring a wrongful death suit.
You need to show that your loved one died due to the negligent or reckless actions of another and that you suffered damages as a result to prevail in a wrongful death suit.
Wrongful death and negligence
A wrongful death suit is based on negligence. Negligence means that a person had a duty toward another, breached that duty and that the breach caused damages. Let’s use a fatal car crash as an example.
All motorists have a duty to drive reasonably under the circumstances. If a motorist strikes another driver and the resulting crash causes the other driver to die, this may be a breach that caused damages, the damages being the financial impact of the death of the other motorist. It may be possible to sue the at-fault driver for wrongful death under such circumstances.
Damages in a wrongful death suit
You can recover damages for medical expenses related to death and funeral expenses. Spouses can also recover damages for loss of consortium, although this is done in a separate claim for determining damages resulting from the death.
Learn more about your options
After the death of a loved one, you may have several options for compensation. If the death was due to an act of negligence, pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit may be a sensible option. You have rights if you lose a loved one due to negligence. Knowing your options can be the first step toward healing.