Easton Wrongful Death Attorney
If your loved one has died due to the fault of another, you are likely reeling from the loss, both emotionally and — in some cases — financially. Though many would prefer to grieve without having to take into consideration various practical issues, the surviving family members of the deceased frequently (and justifiably) experience a range of difficulties in the wake of their loved one’s death.
You may be wondering, then, if there is an actionable injury or malpractice claim in the wake of your loved one’s wrongful death, and whether the law accounts for the losses that you suffered as a result. Generally yes, but whether you qualify — and the extent of your wrongful death damages — depends on the circumstances.
Whether your loved one succumbed to injuries caused by the negligence of a healthcare professional in the medical context, or to injuries caused by some other negligence, you may be entitled to recover damages for the wrongful death of your loved one, pursuant to Pennsylvania law. To get connected with an experienced Easton wrongful death attorney here at Drake, Hileman & Davis, PC, call (888) 777-7098 today.
Pennsylvania wrongful death law is rather straightforward. Let’s take a look at some of the basics.
Who is Entitled to Damages for Wrongful Death?
In Easton, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere throughout the state, a limited and defined set of surviving beneficiaries are entitled to recover wrongful death damages. These qualified beneficiaries include the:
- Children of the deceased
- Parents of the deceased
- Spouse of the deceased
If no qualified beneficiaries remain, then wrongful death damages will go to any remaining surviving family members and other dependents. These survivors must show that they were at least partially financially dependent on the deceased.
If you do not belong to any of these categories, you are likely not entitled to recover wrongful death damages.
Asserting Wrongful Death Damages
It’s important to note that a wrongful death claim accounts for the losses of the surviving family members — not the losses suffered directly by the deceased. For example, suppose that your loved one was misdiagnosed, leading to the advancement of their cancer and subsequent death. You cannot thereafter assert a claim on the basis of the pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment, and other damages suffered directly by the deceased. Your wrongful death claim will only account for the losses you suffered as a result of your loved one’s death.
Wrongful death damages include:
Medical and Funeral Expenses
You may recover for any expenses you personally incurred in relation to the medical care and funeral proceedings of the deceased.
Loss of Companionship, Consortium, and Guidance
Pennsylvania law does entitle survivors to recover damages for the loss of companionship, consortium (i.e., the martial relationship), and guidance (i.e., the loss of parental guidance with regard to a child’s development). Given the subjective nature of such losses, they can be rather difficult to measure.
Support and Services
Survivors are entitled to lost financial support and domestic services. Financial support is fairly straightforward. If your spouse has died, then the lost household income (from them working) may be calculated as part of your damages. Domestic services are meant to be accounted for, too. For example, if your spouse stayed at home in Easton while you worked, you can still recover for the financial value of their domestic services (cleaning, childrearing, and more).
The wrongful death of a loved one — in most cases — causes severe emotional distress. Depending on the nature of your relationship with the deceased, you may be able to recover significant damages for such emotional distress.
Connect With an Easton Wrongful Death Attorney Today
Since 1985, Drake, Hileman & Davis, PC, has successfully litigated wrongful death claims on behalf of surviving family members and other qualified dependents. Just recently, our firm secured a $2M verdict in a wrongful death action. With over a century of combined legal experience, our attorneys are accustomed to navigating the complications of a wrongful death lawsuit, even when the wrongful death at-issue occurred due to the negligence of a healthcare professional.
The carelessness of a healthcare professionals can lead to serious injury, or even death. When the negligence of a healthcare professional in any facility — whether a small clinic, or a larger hospital like Easton Hospital or St. Luke’s — leads to the wrongful death of a loved one, you may be entitled to recover damages. Call (888) 777-7098 for a free consultation with an Easton wrongful death attorney today.