Wrongful death claims in Texas are special lawsuits that only occur after someone dies in a tragic but preventable manner. When an individual or possibly a business does something that causes someone’s death or fails to take necessary steps that would have prevented a tragedy, the surviving family members of the deceased individual can file a lawsuit.
In some states, a wrongful death lawsuit focuses on the losses of the surviving family members, while other states have statutes that focus on the losses suffered by the deceased party. In Texas, wrongful death claims serve both as a form of compensation for the affected family members and also as a means of punishment for the responsible party.
Texas state law specifically allows wrongful death claims to seek compensation both on behalf of the deceased and on behalf of their family.
What losses did the deceased person suffer?
Texas wrongful death claims can allow the surviving family members to seek compensation on behalf of their loved one who died. Specifically, family members may request financial compensation for the pain and suffering of their loved one prior to their death.
If they had medical bills accrued prior to dying, those losses could also be part of the wrongful death claim. Their funeral expenses can also contribute to the total value thought in the lawsuit.
What losses can family members seek?
The family members who survive the deceased individual will have to go a lifetime without their household contributions. Their lost financial support can be a major part of the total value of the lawsuit.
Family members can also claim the loss of companionship and household support. Individuals frequently provide services, including personal counseling and domestic chores, that are valuable for their families. Finally, the survivors have the right to make a claim related to their mental anguish over the unexpected loss of one of their immediate family members.
Texas law does also potentially allow for punitive damages, but only in very specific circumstances. The defendant may have to pay additional financial compensation to the family when there is proof that either an intentional action or gross negligence was the cause of someone’s death.
Understanding the losses that contribute to a wrongful death lawsuit in Texas can help families demand justice more fully and effectively.