After you’ve lost a close family member, you should be able to mourn in peace. Unfortunately, this grieving can be interrupted when someone else is liable for the cause of your loved one’s passing.
If another person or persons has acted negligently or intentionally caused the death of your family member, then you may be able to bring a claim against them to recover compensation for all your family has been through.
However, before you can move forward with your case, you’ll need to make sure that you do, in fact, have the right to file the claim. Continue reading to learn more about which individuals have the authority to file a wrongful death claim in Indiana, and the damages that can be included in your case.
Pursuing Your Civil Suit
As the surviving spouse or adult children of the deceased, you might think that you automatically are eligible to file the wrongful death claim for your deceased family member, but Indiana law is clear: only the personal representative of the decedent’s estate can pursue the claim.
Now this may, in fact, be the surviving spouse or adult children, but really any person the decedent named as being in charge of their affairs can file the wrongful death claim. If you are the parents or legal guardian of a minor who has passed away, you will be considered the representative of their estate.
Getting the Damages You’re Entitled To
After your attorney has determined that you are the designated representative of the decedent’s estate, you can begin quantifying your damages. Your lawyer will, for the most part, review your losses to ascertain how much each is worth.
There are certain losses that can be obtained in a wrongful death case, and how much each is worth. The most commonly sought damages in an Indiana wrongful death claim are as follows:
- Medical expenses of the deceased
- Funeral and burial costs
- Court and attorney fees
- Lost wages and earning capacity
If you are the parent or legal guardian of a child who has passed away, you can also recover compensation for counseling services for yourself and the child’s siblings, as well as for the loss of companionship, love and household services. It’s important to note that damages in a wrongful death claim are capped at a maximum of $300,000.
Reach Out to an Indianapolis Wrongful Death Lawyer
You don’t have to let the person who is responsible for causing the death of your loved one get away with it. Work with an experienced Indianapolis wrongful death lawyer who can ensure that you get the most out of your claim while holding the liable party accountable for their wrongful actions.