Recovering Loss of Companionship and Society with a Wrongful Death Claim
We often get calls with questions about how wrongful death claims work and how to make sure family members receive the most fair amount of compensation for their losses. We're sorry that you've lost a loved one through someone else's negligence. We understand that this is a difficult time and we hope this article might answer some of your questions.
In this article we'll look at:
- What loss of companionship and society is in the State of Texas
- Look at the things the jury must consider when gauging your claim
- How to move forward with your claim
What Exactly is Loss of Companionship and Society?
The plaintiff can recover damages for loss of companionship and society in a wrongful death claim. Companionship and society are defined as the positive benefits flowing from the love, comfort, companionship, and society the plaintiff would, in reasonable probability, have experienced if the decedent had lived.
It is important to note that even though this may sound similar to Loss of Consortium or Loss of (Parental, Child's, Spouse's) Society, it is a distinct and unique damage.
Things the Jury Must Consider
Before awarding damages for loss of companionship and society in a wrongful death case, the jury has several things to consider. This includes the following:
- the relationship between the plaintiff and the decedent
- the living arrangements of the plaintiff and the decedent
- extended separations of the decedent from the plaintiff
- the harmony of their family relations
- their common interests and activities
You may be curious why all of these areas are taken into consideration. At the risk of being too blunt, the jury has to get a pretty accurate idea of the quality of your relationship in order to gauge what would be a fair amount to recover. For instance, a parent that hasn't talked to their child in ten years will not be awarded a similar amount to a wife having lost her husband after fifteen years of marriage if the jury can see that their relationship is sound and in good standing. Similarly, a separated spouse who has recently filed for divorce would likely have a vastly different outcome to a child that has lost a mother that they were close to, talked with often, if they can demonstrate the closeness of their relationship.
How to Move Forward with Your Claim
It all comes down to the story you present to the jury. Documentation and evidence are a big part of this, and an experienced attorney knows how to best put your case before the court. If you're interested in talking with Grossman Law Offices regarding your claim, we have experienced attorneys available to you by phone 24/7. Even if you just have some questions about the kind of documentation that would be helpful in proving up your damages, we're happy to help. Feel free to give us a call at (855) 326-0000.