It is all but impossible to overestimate the devastation families suffer when someone is diagnosed with a serious and ultimately fatal illness caused by asbestos exposure. Worlds can be turned upside down and there is often extensive and unfortunate adjustments that need to be made rather quickly, leaving victims and their families feeling lost, angry, sad and overwhelmed.
The emotional toll of such a tragic experience is undeniable; but many people soon realize that the financial toll is considerable as well. While nothing can undo or fix the emotional and physical loss when a victim of an asbestos-related disease passes away, there are ways to address the financial aspect. In this post, we will explore some types of damages that may be awarded to a victim’s family should they choose to pursue a wrongful death claim.
Basically speaking, the types of damages that may be awarded in wrongful death claims boil down to those that can be measured and those that cannot.
Economic damages, which are the type that can be measured, include loss of income, medical expenses and funeral expenses. This can be difficult for families to understand as a jury will have to try to quantify the value of a person’s life and death. It is a more objective calculation than other types of damages.
On the other hand, there are often significant damages that may be awarded that reflect losses which cannot be precisely calculated. These losses include pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and loss of enjoyment. These damages are subjective and can be extensive.
Punitive damages may also be awarded in wrongful death claims. These damages are intended to punish the party for any wrongdoing that contributed to a person’s death. These too have proven to be substantial in some wrongful death claims involving asbestos.
Legal claims are not just about money; they are also about getting support and answers to people who need and deserve them. A successful claim can help families find some closure and have the means to recover from the loss financially. Those who are considering their options for filing an asbestos-related wrongful death claim can discuss their case with an attorney who will be able to explain the types and amount of damages that may be sought.