Loss of consortium refers to the loss of companionship, intimacy, and/or moral support after a wrongful death or injury to a person’s spouse or legal partner. It entitles the plaintiff to recover non-economic damages for this loss. However, it does not cover economic loses such as lost earning capacity of the deceased spouse. Keep reading to find out what your options are if you have lost a partner and then contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 if you require a free legal consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney.
What is “Loss of Consortium” from a Legal Perspective?
When the term “loss of consortium” is used, it describes the loss of moral support, love, and intimacy after a person loses their spouse or registered domestic partner. It can entitle the plaintiff to recover compensation for non-economic damages. Note that this does not include recovering compensation for lost earning capacities, medical bills, or other economic damages. There are other things you can sue for to be compensated for those.
The Spouse or Registered Domestic Partner Must Prove Four Elements to Win Their Case
In order to have a valid case for loss of consortium, there are four elements that must be proven:
- The deceased was injured due to another party acting negligently or due to another wrongful act.
- The plaintiff was lawfully married or legally in a registered domestic partnership at the time their partner was injured.
- The plaintiff suffered loss of consortium from their partner.
- The loss was the direct result of the defendant’s wrongful act.
Note that this does not always mean that the injured has died. While many loss of consortium cases are also wrongful death cases, that is not always true. If the victim has become paralyzed, has suffered a serious mental decline after a brain injury, or if they are otherwise no longer able to provide the support they once did, then their partner might be able to sue for loss of consortium.
Your Spouse Does Not Have to Sue for Their Own Injury
There are any number of reasons that a person might not sue the at-fault party for their own injury. That does not preclude their spouse from suing for loss of consortium. This is an independent tort that does not require the injured spouse to prove their injury in court. That said, if your spouse did go to court and it was found that there was not another liable party, then you cannot sue for loss of consortium.
If you have suffered loss of consortium due to your spouse or registered domestic partner’s injury, we urge you to contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation.