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How to Determine a Wrongful Death Claim

How to Determine a Wrongful Death Claim

By Trapp & Geller

A wrongful death usually occurs when a person acts in neglect, negligence, or in a wrongful manner that results in the death of another person.

In such a situation, a close family member of the deceased can file a case for damages against the person who caused the accident. The first step starts by hiring a Chicago personal injury lawyer.

The main objective of a wrongful death lawsuit is similar to that of a personal injury claim – to obtain monetary damages for the family of the person killed.

The success of the case often depends on the type of Chicago wrongful death attorney you are working with. It is always good to hire lawyers who have experience in handling wrongful death claims.

Common scenarios of wrongful death

Wrongful deaths often arise when there’s sufficient evidence that death would not have occurred were it not for the misconduct or mistake of another person.

If wrongful death attorneys in Illinois are able to prove that the individual who caused the accident was careless or negligent, then the wrongful death claim has a higher chance of succeeding.

Wrongful death cases are normally brought against drivers who violate traffic rules, careless drivers who don’t pay attention, medical professionals whose actions lead to death due to negligence, and anybody who causes the death of another person because of carelessness or negligence.

Potential types of damages in a wrongful death claim

There are three likely types of damages that may be awarded during a wrongful death claim. The first one is economic losses. This involves financial losses as well as the loss of service experienced by the family of the person killed by the wrongful death.

Determining the value of economic losses is not very difficult. For example, the family of the deceased may present the medical bills to be paid by the person accused of the wrongful death.

Funeral expenses can also be categorized under economic loss. This can easily be done through Chicago accident attorneys.

The other type of damage that may be awarded is non-economic damages. This comprises loss of companionship and love. It is almost impossible to place a monetary value on the loss of a loved one.

The objective of this type of damage is to have the family of the diseased compensated in some way for the tragic loss.

Factors that determine a wrongful death claim

Determining a monetary value for the life of another person is not easy. However, there are several factors that are usually used to calculate the amount to be awarded to the family. Such factors include:

  • The age of the person involved in a wrongful death
  • The earning capacity of the diseased
  • The state of health of the diseased
  • The income of the diseased at the time of death
  • Level of education and training of the diseased
  • Funeral expenses
  • Medical bills
  • The value of benefits of the diseased

The damages awarded to the family should just be a blanket estimate. They must be backed by facts and adequate evidence.

The judge should use the evidence presented by the personal injury attorneys in Chicago to determine the right type of damages to award.

Expert witnesses and economists can also look at the person involved in the wrongful death together with the circumstances surrounding his or her death before determining the amount of damage.

Why a lawyer is important

If you are the one representing the family of the person killed through wrongful death, you need advice and counsel from seasoned Chicago wrongful death lawyers. This is because wrongful death cases are sometimes difficult to prove.

But with a good wrongful death lawyer from Trapp & Geller, you can be assured of being compensated within the shortest time possible.


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