Some people believe that damages and compensation awarded to injured individuals or family members of someone that has died are only economic in nature. While the loss of future earnings, medical bills and catastrophic care costs are often the subjects of compensation, a loss of companionship may also result in compensation.
Loss of companionship and loss of consortium are both topics of compensation in wrongful death and personal injury cases. It is likely that most individuals that are injured or killed leave behind loved ones. Immediate family members, spouses and children, can file a claim based on the loss they experienced after the death or injury of their family member.
In loss of companionship cases, damages awarded are meant to represent the benefits that an individual would experience from the love and relationship of the individual that was injured or killed. To be awarded loss of companionship compensation, a jury examines different elements of the relationship in question. Considerations may be living arrangements, the condition of the relationship at the time of loss and what interests and activities the parties had in common and enjoyed.
A loss of consortium, especially in cases where there are children left behind, may also be used to award compensation. Considerations for this type of compensation would be the loss of companionship, assistance, affection and solace that family members suffered as a result of their loved one's injury or death.
Typically claims of loss of companionship or consortium weigh heavily on the outcome of the injured parties claim. Family members filing the claim tend to do so in conjunction with their loved ones claim. Since the award of compensation for a loss of companionship claim hinges on the compensation awarded in the wrongful death or personal injury case, seeking the advice of an experienced attorney may help.