Coping with the loss of a loved one can be devastating and the effects can last a lifetime. The emotional impact can be further exacerbated when a loved one’s passing was caused by the wrongdoing of a third-party. “Wrongful death” is simply defined as a death that is caused by the misconduct of another individual or entity. Such misconduct can vary anywhere from the intentional infliction of physical harm to basic negligence. The experienced wrongful death and personal injury attorneys at Rue and Ziffra have found that individuals are sometimes unsure as to what remedies are available to the survivors when a loved one is lost due to a wrongful death.
Initially, the purpose of the Florida wrongful death law is to provide for the recoupment of damages sustained as to each survivor of the deceased. Pursuant to Florida law, each survivor may recover the value of lost support and services from the date of the decedent’s injury to her or his death, including interest, along with the present value of the future loss of support and services from the date of death. In determining the value of the loss of support and services, the following factors are given consideration: (1) the survivor’s relationship to the decedent; (2) the amount of the decedent’s probable net income available for distribution to the particular survivor; and (3) the replacement value of the decedent’s services to the survivor. In computing the duration of future losses, the joint life expectancies of the survivor and the decedent and the period of minority (in the case of minor children) are considered. Not to mention, the surviving spouse may also recover for the loss of the decedent’s companionship, protection and mental pain and suffering. Minor children of the decedent, and all children of the decedent if there is no surviving spouse, may also recover for lost parental companionship, instruction, and guidance and for mental pain and suffering. Each parent of a deceased minor child may similarly recover for mental pain and suffering. Moreover, each parent of a deceased adult child may likewise receive mental pain and suffering damages so long as there are no other survivors. Further, a survivor who has paid for the deceased’s medical and funeral expenses may recover these costs.
Additionally, the decedent’s personal representative may recover for the decedent’s estate the loss of earnings of the deceased from the date of injury to the date of death along with interest. Loss of the reasonable prospective net accumulations of the estate may also be recovered in their present money value if the decedent’s survivors include a surviving spouse or lineal descendants. To the extent that medical and funeral expenses are not otherwise recovered by a particular paying survivor, the estate may recover medical and funeral expenses that have become a charge against the estate or that were paid by or on behalf of the decedent.
If you believe your loved one has died as a result of another party’s misconduct, contact the knowledgeable wrongful death attorneys at Rue & Ziffra today to discuss your right to recovery. The Daytona Beach accident attorneys at Rue & Ziffra, have over 30 years of experience in representing the victims of serious automobile accidents, wrongful death claims, motorcycle accidents, truck accidents and other personal injury claims. To learn more about their firm, visit rueziffra.com