What You Should Know Before Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

After losing a loved one in New Mexico due to a medical error, you may be struggling to take care of the end-of-life responsibilities such as arranging the funeral and settling the estate. Even if you know someone else should be held liable for the loss, it may seem overwhelming to try to prove this in court. We at Curtis & Lucero have often assisted victims’ families with the legal process of receiving compensation due to them so that they are not devastated by the financial consequences of another’s mistake.

To prove wrongful death, FindLaw explains that you will need to show that your loved one’s death was the result of the medical professional’s or institution’s negligence, and that you are suffering financially because of it. Only the personal representative of your lost family member’s estate may bring the action, which may be the person the victim named as executor of his or her will. If there is no will, you may apply to the court to receive this appointment.

Some of the financial injuries you suffer that may be compensated include the following:

  • Loss of support and income
  • Loss of services
  • Lost prospect of inheritance
  • Medical expenses
  • Funeral expenses

Other damages are also sometimes awarded by a jury, such as punitive damages. This type of judgment is typically dependent on whether the defendant’s actions are deemed malicious or reckless, though. 

When deciding the financial consequences of the loss to you, the jury will consider factors such as the earning capacity of your loved one at the time of his or her death. This may be the basis to determine the future earning potential, and thus the dollar amount that you should be compensated. More information about losses related to negligent medical care is available on our webpage.

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