When a person suffers a life-altering injury, they are often not the only one to suffer. A husband or wife can be a person’s closest companion, and that person suffers along with their loved one.
A major injury can mean that the spouse of the victim must now provide extra care, and the emotional support and companionship they can expect from their now-injured loved one may be limited. Loss of consortium compensation attempts to take these important family considerations into account.
Some loss of consortium cases involve the loss or disability of someone’s child or parent. Any loss or severe disability can change a family forever. Loss of consortium compensation is a type of non-economic compensation meant to help ease a family’s pain and emotional suffering at such times of severe trauma, even though no amount of money can truly make things right.
It takes Kentucky Courage to fight for loss of consortium compensation. At Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer, our lawyers stand ready to seek every dollar of compensation you are owed.
Contact us now for a free consultation.
What Does Loss of Consortium Mean?
When a husband or wife loses their spouse’s “services, assistance, aid, society, companionship and conjugal relationship” because of an injury, Kentucky law provides for “damages for loss of consortium” against a third party.
In the old days, only a spouse could make a claim for loss of consortium, but now many states allow committed partners or those in same-sex marriages to file these claims. And in some states, a child or parent can file a loss of consortium claim.
The experienced lawyers at Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer know Kentucky law and have extensive experience with personal injury and loss of consortium claims.
In a spousal loss of consortium case, generally three factors must be provided for proving loss of consortium :
- The injured person and their partner were in a committed relationship and living together both before and after the accident.
- The accident was caused by the defendant’s negligence or wrongful acts.
- The partner of the person injured has suffered and will continue to suffer losses including affection, assistance, sexual relations, and emotional and social losses, which will be harmful to their relationship or life.
The loss or disability of a child can be especially traumatic to a family. Loss of consortium compensation, known in this case as filial consortium, would cover this situation. Special care for an injured child, educational considerations, or funeral and grief arrangements may be included.
The loss of a parent can be extremely hard on the children. Children rely on their parents for nearly everything – not only emotional, but also financial support. Not all jurisdictions treat loss of filial or parental consortium cases with the same importance as cases of spousal consortium. You should contact an attorney experienced in loss of consortium cases with any specific questions.
What Kind of Damages Does Loss of Consortium Cover?
When you need to recover compensation because you’ve been wronged by an injury your spouse suffered, loss of consortium claims fall into the category of general damages.
General damages are non-economic damages, meaning they are losses that don’t come with a specific price tag – such as the inability of your spouse to continue providing you social and emotional support. In these cases, money serves as a substitute for what was actually lost.
Loss of consortium claims typically require that the injured person suffered a severe and long-lasting injury, or was killed.
Preparing for a Loss of Consortium Claim
If your claim involves a spouse, you need to be prepared for aggressive questioning about your marriage by the lawyers for the person who caused the injury and their insurance company. This takes a lot of courage.
During depositions and at trial, they can raise questions about your sex life, any separations and more.
It’s hard to go through, so having an experienced lawyer representing you is critical.
The attorneys at Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer can help you prepare for this questioning. We’ll stay by your side and watch out for you.
Your claim needs to focus on the pain and loss you’ve experienced as a result of the injury of your loved one.
You need to show how you’ve lost companionship, comfort, security and more because of someone else’s wrongdoing.
The court may look at several factors in a loss of consortium claim, such as:
- Whether the marriage or union was a loving and stable relationship
- The family’s living arrangements
- Family members’ life expectancies
- The parents’ role in household chores and raising children
- The level of care and companionship between the spouses at the time of the accident
Loss of consortium awards are decided at the discretion of a judge or jury, and the laws vary by state, so your case needs to be carefully prepared by attorneys who concentrate on Kentucky tort law. Sometimes you need to hire an economics expert to establish a dollar value for your loss.
Lawyers with Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer have been fighting for Kentuckians for more than 35 years. We’ve seen over and over again what Kentucky Courage means. You’ve already suffered a huge trauma. Let us work to pursue the money you deserve for your loss.
How Our Lawyers Can Help with Your Loss of Consortium Claim
Loss of consortium can be difficult to prove, because courts may consider these issues subjective. It is hard to put a price on the support of family and loved ones, but these are changes that must be accounted for when determining compensation for a life-altering accident. If you are experiencing trauma related to the injury or death of a loved one, you need an experienced legal team by your side so that you can focus on your family. Please call Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer today or visit us at our website for a free consultation. We’re here to help you and your family.