Wrongful Death cases have several damage components. There’s the economic loss (medical bills, funeral bills, past and future lost wages and loss of retirement benefits). There’s punitive damages to punish especially heinous wrongful at-fault parties. There’s also pain and suffering of the decedent – which is allowed in North Carolina, but not in Virginia.
One additional component both North Carolina and Virginia allow in wrongful death cases is “Loss of services.” Loss of services usually means the chores and care the decedent would have done for the benefit of the beneficiaries. Loss of services also includes the care, protection and help which the decedent provided to the beneficiaries.
Normally, we think of an older decedent doing chores for a spouse or for children, but it also applies where children die. Children do perform household chores and, in some cases, other forms of work – such as children who work on a farm. Normally we think of the care an older decedent provides a child or spouse, but a child can also provide care and protection for parents – especially when the parent is elderly.
Loss of services are usually calculated with the help of actuary tables (used mainly to figure out how long the decedent would have lived) and expert witnesses who know what people have been awarded in comparable situations.
If you know someone who died through the wrongful act of another, in North Carolina or Virginia, make sure that you really do contact an attorney. It is easy to do.
When it comes to wrongful death cases in North Carolina and Virginia, make sure you contact us, or call Wrongful Death Lawyer Joe Miller toll free at 888-694-1671 to get all of the information that you need and to claim all the damages you’re allowed. We also suggest you visit our page relating to wrongful death cases for a full list of helpful hints.