When a loved one is suddenly killed due to the actions, or negligence, of another person, or business, it can leave a family facing serious challenges during an already difficult time. There is nothing that can bring that loved one back, however, Connecticut state law allows for the pursuit of damages, which may provide them some much needed assistance.
In the state of Connecticut, estate executors or administrators can file wrongful death lawsuits on behalf of the decedents’ estates. Under Connecticut General Statute 52-555, these lawsuits can seek fair and reasonable compensation for losses relating to the death. Any damages that are awarded to the victims’ estates are then distributed to their beneficiaries in accordance to their wills or, if they do not have one, with the state’s wrongful death and intestacy statutes.
Generally, there are two categories of damages that people can seek in personal injury and wrongful death claims in Connecticut – economic damages and noneconomic damages, according to the State of Connecticut Judicial Branch.
Economic damages are those that impact victims, or their families, financially. These types of damages can include compensation for reasonable and necessary medical expenses, for any treatment that was administered in an attempt to save the decedents’ lives. Economic damages can also include burial and funerary costs. Additionally, the value of the victim’s lost earning potential may also be included in economic damages.
Noneconomic damages are compensation for the less tangible losses suffered as the result of a wrongful death. These types of damages include pain and suffering, compensation for the actual death itself and the victim’s loss of capacity to enjoy aspects of life. This could include family, sports, work or recreation, among others of life’s activities. There is not a precise formula for determining the amount of awards in these cases; instead the decision is often left up to a jury.
While the information in this post has provided an overview of the damages that can be awarded in wrongful death cases, it should be considered as general information and not be taken as professional legal advice.