How does the court figure loss of earnings?
In a wrongful death lawsuit, you may be able to get money damages for the loss of earnings. This type of claim requires the court to consider the potential earnings lost because of the death of your loved one.
It is a true estimate since there is no way to know what the amount would have been. The New Mexico Statutes establish certain criteria the court may use when considering an award for loss of earnings.
Criteria for consideration
The law allows a court to consider general information such as the person’s age when determining damages. For loss of earnings, the court will look at information pertaining to your loved one’s ability to earn and the likelihood of earnings over his or her natural lifetime should he or she have not died. The factors considered may include his or her lifestyle and health.
The court will also use data on the person’s earning capacity at the time he or she died. It will consider his or her occupation and pay rate at the time of death.
Your loved one may not have worked in a traditional role at the time of his or her death. For example, if your loved one stayed home and took care of the children and household, these duties have a monetary value the court will calculate when considering the loss of earnings.
The court will use financial experts to assist with estimates and calculations to determine the reasonable amount of money to award for loss of earnings in a wrongful death lawsuit.