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The Ohio personal injury lawyers at the Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC are often asked about the types of damages that are available in a Toledo wrongful death damages case. To answer that question, it is helpful to look at the types of jury instructions concerning damages that the court would give to the jury if the matter were to actually proceed to trial.
Courts in Ohio would likely instruct the jury to award two types of damages: compensatory damages as to wrongful death, and compensatory damages as to a “survival action” for the deceased’s conscious pain and suffering prior to death. Let’s take a look at these damages more closely.
The court would instruct the jury as to compensatory damages relative to wrongful death. This would include an instruction that the jury should find what sum of money will compensate the beneficiaries for the injury and loss to them resulting from the wrongful death of the deceased person. The courts could award for funeral and burial expenses, any medical bills associated with the accident, and future lost wages.
Toledo courts would instruct the jury to consider the loss of support from the reasonably expected earning capacity, the loss of services, the loss of society (including companionship, consortium, care, assistance, attention, protection, advice, guidance, counsel, instruction, training, and education suffered by the parents or next of kin), and the mental anguish incurred by the surviving spouse, dependent children, parents, or next of kin.
For recovering grief damages, one would have to testify at trial so that children, parents, the spouse, and family members are able to collect under the Ohio wrongful death statute. They would talk about the emotional impact the death of their loved one had on them individually and on the family as a whole.
Loss of love and affection would be proven by the testimony of family members talking about the specific relationship they had with the deceased individual, what impact that individual had on their life, and how the loss of that relationship has impacted them in the past and in the future.
To prove a loss of companionship, Toledo individuals could testify about the impact on their life of the relationship they had with the deceased individual. They could give specific examples, and they could tell stories. They would talk about what their life was like with that individual before and how it is now after their death.
Loss of society would be what that individual who died did and what impact they played in the individual’s life. Loss of consortium would typically be in a spousal situation where one spouse dies. It is the loss of services, love, and companionship that the individual had. It also could be applied to a child.
The court would also likely instruct the jury to award damages as to a “survival action” for the deceased’s conscious pain and suffering prior to death. The rationale is that the deceased was likely conscious of his or her pain, suffering, struggle, and fright that accompanied his or her untimely death.
Usually, the autopsy report will need to be ordered and carefully reviewed in order to make this type of claim. In addition, your lawyer may perform additional research to back up the conscious pain and suffering claim.
For example, in a drowning case, the lawyer may cite a “Drowning Statistics” article, indicating that a drowning victim does not die instantly, but experiences the terrible drowning process that drags on for several minutes. This will likely increase the amount of compensation that is ultimately paid.
Our Ohio wrongful death lawyers are award-winning and perform a detailed analysis of all relevant records to determine whether your family member has been the victim of wrongful death. We will discuss your case with you, review and explain the records, and advise you whether you have a legitimate claim for a wrongful death lawsuit.
If you have questions about Toledo wrongful death damages or survival action damages that may be payable to you or your loved ones, contact the personal injury attorneys at Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC.