A wrongful death suit is usually filed in order to hold someone or a company responsible for the death of a person. The suit is typically brought by close family members of the deceased. If a person is killed in the workplace or by an individual, family members can win a certain amount in damages by filing a wrongful death suit. The courts weigh the financial and emotional costs as a result of the loss of the person when awarding damages. However, the amount awarded could potential be small due to a number of reasons.
The Deceased is Over the Age of Retirement
According to Social Security, the age of retirement begins at 62. If your deceased parent was over the age of retirement you will most likely receive very little in monetary damages. Courts believe that a person over the age of retirement has already maxed out on their earning potential. Therefore, they believe that if the person were still alive, they would not be bringing in much of an income.
The Suit is Filed by the Deceased's Adult Children
The courts view adult children as being financially capable of supporting themselves. Therefore, it is assumed that they no longer need financial support from their parents and would benefit from little to no monetary damages from a wrongful death suit. Some states do not allow adult children to file wrongful death suits. As a result, many wrongful death suits are filed by the deceased's spouse, because it is easier for them to show that they have been impacted financially by the death.
The Wrongful Death Suit is for a Child
When a working adult dies their children have the opportunity to collect damages based on a number of factors. The courts factor in the impact that the loss of guidance, care, and income will have on the children. However, parents who are filing a wrong death claim for their child usually only receive damages based on financial loss. Therefore, the amount awarded for wrongful death suits concerning children is very small.
Wrongful death cases are designed to help family members get through the death of a loved one. However, receiving a low monetary amount from a wrongful death suit can make an already difficult time even more grueling. Therefore, use this as a guide to make sure you are aware of the reasons that may lead to a low monetary award in a suit, even if you hire a wrongful death attorney.