Nobody expects to lose a loved one on any given day. However, it does happen that sometimes when a person says “good-bye” to a loved one in the morning, he or she will never see that person alive again. This often happens when an act of negligence occurs.
In fact, a person in Massachusetts may be liable for the wrongful death of another if due to either his or her negligence, or through some sort of willful or reckless act, he or she causes another person to die, and had the victim survived the victim would have recovered compensation under a personal injury lawsuit. In situations like this, the victim’s loved ones may want to pursue compensation via a wrongful death suit.
Massachusetts law dictates what damages may be sought in a wrongful death suit. First of all, the defendant in such cases may be responsible for the fair market value for loss of income. This income includes that which would reasonably be expected should the victim have survived. Compensation for the victim’s services and protection can also be sought through a wrongful death suit. Those who file a wrongful death suit may also seek compensation for the loss of care, the loss of assistance and the loss of companionship. Similarly, a person pursuing a wrongful death suit can also seek compensation for the loss of counsel, the loss of guidance and the loss of comfort.
Under Massachusetts law, those pursuing a wrongful death suit can also seek compensation for funeral and burial costs, in an amount that is considered to be reasonable. Finally, if the victim died due to a malicious, willful or reckless act, the victim’s loved ones can seek punitive damages of at least $5000 or more, with a few specific exceptions.
It is important that those filing a wrongful death suit are fully compensated for their losses. While no amount of money can bring back a loved one lost, it can at least help families recover financially from the death, and it gives them a sense that justice has been done.