The loss of a family member to wrongful death is a tragedy in more ways than one. The deceased may have been a hard worker and provider. But most times, they were much more than that.
They were a spouse, parent or child. They were a source of love, guidance, advice and support. As your husband or wife, they were your partner, lover and friend. You might feel the loss of these traits even more than the income that the deceased can no longer earn for the household.
New Mexico’s personal injury laws recognize that a wrongful death has more than a financial impact on a grieving family. The law lets the personal representative (typically the deceased’s surviving spouse or another relative) seek compensation for things like:
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of consortium, which means the loss of affection and sexual relations
- Mental anguish
In addition, the representative can pursue compensation for the pain and suffering the deceased endured from their injuries before passing away.
It is not simple to reach a reasonable level of compensation for these types of damages. Putting a dollar figure on grief is never easy. But there are methods for holding a negligent driver, doctor or other party accountable for the devastation they have caused the deceased and their loved ones.
How wrongful death cases get resolved
Most wrongful death lawsuits settle out of court with acceptable compensation, but sometimes the plaintiff and the defendant (or their insurance company) cannot agree. Then the case must go to trial. Either way, having an experienced personal injury attorney on your side can make a huge difference.