The definition of consortium is an association between two parties, such as two spouses or a parent and child. In civil law, loss of consortium refers to the benefits, advantages and rewards a plaintiff can no longer receive from an injured or deceased accident victim. Loss of consortium damages may be available in a case involving permanent disability or wrongful death. Find out if you are eligible for this type of financial award by consulting with an injury attorney.
Can You Recover Loss of Consortium Damages?
Loss of consortium is a category of compensatory damages. Compensatory damages reimburse a victim for losses related to an accident to make him or her whole again. Loss of consortium specifically makes up for intangible losses connected to a person’s serious injury or death, such as the loss of the victim’s companionship or society. While loss of consortium is not available in every personal injury or wrongful death claim, the courts will consider granting this award in some situations.
Wrongful death. This is a type of tort claim a family may be able to file after the preventable death of a loved one. While no amount of money can replace a loved one, a loss of consortium award can make up for surviving family members’ losses in relation to the death, such as lost household services, love or care.
Catastrophic injury. If a victim suffered a catastrophic injury that will temporarily take away his or her ability to care for or support his or her family, such as multiple broken bones, the courts may award loss of consortium damages for the foreseeable amount of time the victim will be in recovery.
Permanent disability. Loss of consortium can also be appropriate in a case involving a permanent disability or loss of a bodily function. If someone becomes impotent from an accident, for example, the other spouse could file a claim for loss of sexual relations between the couple.
In general, loss of consortium damages are only available if a defendant’s negligent or intentional actions cause severe, permanent or fatal injuries. Loss of consortium is a type of noneconomic damage award. Noneconomic, or general damages, describe losses that do not have a dollar amount. These include physical pain and suffering, emotional distress, mental anguish, psychological harm, depression, anxiety, loss of reputation, and humiliation. A personal injury lawyer can let you know if you are eligible for loss of consortium damages during your claim in Kansas City.
What Does a Loss of Consortium Award Entail?
In most cases, the courts in Missouri and Kansas will only award loss of consortium damages to a victim’s spouse. In some situations, however, children and parents could also recover this type of damage award. If you do qualify for loss of consortium damages in Kansas City, your lawyer can help you demand an amount that is suitable based on the amount, type and extent of your losses. Loss of consortium can encompass several specific types of intangible damages.
Lost love and affection
Lost companionship or company
Lost society and comfort
Lost household services
Lost advice, support and love as a parent
Lost sexual relations for a partner
In addition to a loss of consortium award, you could also recover for other categories of damages during a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. These may include lost wages, medical expenses, property damages, therapy, rehabilitation and legal fees. A successful civil claim will aim to restore you to the condition you were in before the accident and injury occurred. Discuss the full value of your claim with a lawyer in Kansas City for more information. Hiring an attorney can improve your odds of recovering loss of consortium damages, as well as receiving a settlement for other types of losses.