In the unfortunate event that you have a family member die in an accident, you may bring a “wrongful death” claim against the responsible person. Typically, for married people, the spouse makes the claim for herself/himself and children, if any. If the decedent had no spouse, then any heir may make the claim. An heir may be a child, parents, or sibling.

In a wrongful death claim, the family members may claim damages for losing the financial and emotional support of the decedent. For example, if 3 children lost their father in a tragic construction accident, and the father was supporting each of the children with his wages, then the children can make a claim for their financial loss. If the decedent incurred medical bills as a result of the accident, then the family members may recoup the cost of those bills. Additionally, if the decedent suffered during the remaining part of his or her life, then the family may recover money for that suffering.