Losing a loved one is never easy, and the grief can be compounded if their death was caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing. In such cases, the surviving family members may have legal recourse by filing a wrongful death lawsuit. However, what happens when the deceased never held a job? Can you still bring a wrongful death action?
This is a question that many people ask, and understandably so. After all, wrongful death settlements are often based on the victim’s lost wages and future earning potential.
But what if the person who died never worked or earned an income? Does that mean their family is not entitled to compensation for their loss?
Even if the decedent never held a job, he/she may have contributed in some other way to the family. A good example of such a decedent is a housewife, who contributes services, guidance and nurturing for her family. These contributions are quantifiable as “pecuniary losses” in a wrongful death action.
In this blog post, we’ll explore the answer to this question in-depth.
We’ll look at the legal requirements for bringing a wrongful death action, discuss how the lack of a job may affect the damages awarded in a settlement, and provide some guidance on how to navigate this complex legal terrain.
What is a wrongful death action?
A wrongful death action is a type of lawsuit that is brought by the surviving family members of a person who has died as a result of someone else’s wrongful act or negligence.
The purpose of the lawsuit is to compensate the surviving family members for their losses, which can include both economic and non-economic damages.
What economic losses are available?
When a person dies, their surviving family members may suffer a variety of economic losses. For example, if the person who died was the primary breadwinner in the family, the surviving family members may suffer a loss of income. However, even if the person who died did not hold a job, they may have contributed to the family in other ways that can be quantified as economic losses.
A good example of such a person is a housewife. A housewife may not have held a job outside the home, but she may have provided valuable services, guidance, and nurturing for her family. These contributions are just as important as financial contributions and can be quantified as economic losses in a wrongful death action.
Some of the economic losses that can be recovered in a wrongful death action for a housewife may include the value of the services she provided to the family.
For example, if the housewife did all the cooking, cleaning, and child-rearing, the family may need to hire someone to perform these services now that she is no longer there. The cost of hiring someone to perform these services can be included in the damages awarded in the wrongful death action.
In addition to the value of the services provided by the housewife, the surviving family members may also be entitled to recover the value of the guidance and nurturing that the housewife provided. For example, if the housewife provided emotional support and guidance to her children, the children may suffer emotional distress and other psychological injuries as a result of her death. These damages can also be included in the damages awarded in the wrongful death action.
It is important to note that the damages awarded in a wrongful death action can vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case. The damages awarded may include compensation for medical expenses, funeral expenses, lost income, and other economic losses, as well as compensation for non-economic losses such as emotional distress and loss of companionship.
Don’t Wait. Talk to a Wrongful Death Attorney Today
If you have lost a loved one in an accident, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can review your case, help you understand your legal rights, and advise you on the best course of action to take.
At GJEL Accident Attorneys, we have years of experience helping families recover the compensation they deserve after the loss of a loved one. We offer free consultations and work on a contingency fee basis, which means that you will not owe us any fees unless we win your case.