At Denman & Lerner Co., L.P.A., in Ohio, we understand that the unexpected nature of a fatal accident can leave a family member in shock. If the accident that killed your loved one occurred because someone acted carelessly or recklessly, you may have the legal right to seek justice through a wrongful death claim.
As the spouse, child or parent of the lost loved one, you may be able to seek a number of different types of damages, depending on the circumstances. One of these is the loss of consortium.
What is loss of consortium?
According to FindLaw, in the past you only would have qualified for this type of damage if you had lost your spouse, as the term used to apply to the loss of the sexual relationship between the spouses.
However, the law has expanded this definition. The courts realize that the person who caused the fatal accident deprived you of the care, companionship and support that you shared with your loved one, and these are all now included in loss of consortium considerations.
How can you prove loss of consortium?
Loss of consortium is one of the noneconomic damages, which means the dollar amount placed on it is entirely subjective (unlike medical expenses, which have a definitive amount). To convince the judge or jury to choose a figure to award you, you must have the following evidence:
- The age and life expectancy of your loved one at the time of the fatal accident
- Your age and life expectancy
- The nature and extent of the care, companionship and support your loved one provided you
- The nature and extent of the personal, financial and household help you received from your loved one
- If you have children, the nature and extent of the parenting assistance you received from your loved one
More information about loss of consortium and other damages people often receive in wrongful death cases is available on our webpage.