Hiring a Wrongful Death Attorney in Lafayette After the Loss of a Child or Parent

It is difficult to put a price on a human life, but juries and courts must do so in a wrongful death claim. The measure of damages in such a case is financial loss; therefore, the death of a young or elderly family member may pose a particular difficulty. In this article, we will discuss how a can help clients arrive at fair settlements.

Children’s Cases
When adults pass away due to negligence, the family’s financial losses are easily measurable. For instance, if a parent dies, children can sue for loss of income, nurturing, guidance and care. When a child’s death occurs, recovery is limited to a much smaller financial loss. In these cases, financial injury is measured by:

1. The child’s sex, age, work and life expectancy, health and general habits
2. Their future income potential
3. The child’s relationship to those bringing the suit
4. The age, health and finances of those claiming the loss

Much of the process is speculative, and the younger a child is, the harder it is to quantify financial losses. Juries may consider future contributions by the child to their parents’ support, and they often use actuarial tables for rough calculations. Rules against speculation don’t limit recovery, but most awards in child death cases are small.

Cases Involving Unborn Children
Many people wish to bring suits for the wrongful death of an unborn child, but state laws vary in this regard. Most require a live birth to comprise the first part of a wrongful death case–therefore, fetal death is not an actionable cause, nor is emotional injury from the miscarriage. A wrongful death attorney can tell you whether you can sue for wrongful death in such a case.

Elderly Family Members
In the same way that recovery is limited in child death cases, an elderly family member’s death also carries a limited recovery potential. Reduced awards are due to multiple factors: someone past retirement age has lost their earning potential, and any children involved are adults no longer requiring support, nurturing and guidance.

Hiring a Wrongful Death Attorney in Lafayette can help you determine whether you can sue for wrongful death based on the loss of a young or elderly family member, and they can help you arrive at a fair settlement amount.

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