When you suffer catastrophic injuries due to someone’s recklessness, you can and should hold them accountable to the fullest extent of the law. This means asserting your right to compensation for every way your life has been affected by the injuries you sustained.
This also includes the harm others suffer because of your injuries. Known as a “loss of consortium,” these additional damages should also be considered when your personal injury attorney calculates the value of your claim.
Here’s more about loss of consortium in injury cases and whether you may qualify for compensation.
Understanding Loss of Consortium
Loss of consortium refers to a loss of companionship or a relationship. Say you suffered a significant spinal injury in a car accident. If you can no longer engage in an intimate relationship with your partner, your partner could be entitled to compensation for the loss of consortium they experience.
In addition to the loss of companionship, other damages that may be considered loss of consortium include the loss of:
How Loss of Consortium Claims Work
The domestic partners or spouses of injury victims pursue most loss of consortium claims. However, other parties also may have the right to loss of consortium compensation, depending on the details.
Some states allow parents of injured children or children of injured parents to pursue a claim. However, in Georgia, the only party that can pursue a loss of consortium claim is the victim’s spouse. Unmarried partners are also excluded from pursuing a loss of consortium claim.
Suppose a husband was injured in a work accident, which affected the spouses’ marriage and intimacy. In that case, the wife can pursue loss of consortium damages against the at-fault party.
Consortium Claims are “Derivative” in Georgia
In Georgia, loss of consortium claims are also “derivative.” This means they only apply if there’s a valid personal injury case.
For instance, if you were in a car accident but were more than 50% responsible for your injuries, your spouse couldn’t pursue a loss of consortium claim against the other driver because you are most liable for your injury. If you can’t pursue a claim, neither can your spouse.
What’s Loss of Consortium Worth?
A loss of consortium award will vary on a case-by-case basis. Because no amount of money can change or restore your loss, calculating the value of these damages can be complex. These are non-economic damages, so they do not have a set financial value.
Your attorney must assess how your spouse has been affected to quantify the loss of consortium damages accurately. Examples of some of the losses that may be considered include:
Assistance raising children
Having a sexual relationship with your spouse
Help with household chores, maintenance, and childcare
Getting a loss of consortium settlement is crucial for your family to be made whole, as it should cover the expenses related to the effect on your spouse. Suppose you are no longer able to help with household chores. Your spouse may need to hire professionals to help. These costs should be considered as you calculate the value of your claim.
Yet, recovering a settlement that includes loss of consortium damages could prove more challenging than expected. The insurance company will likely do everything it can to escape financial liability. The insurance company might also argue that the marriage wasn’t healthy before the accident, so your injuries haven’t interrupted your relationship with your spouse. An insurance company does not want to lose its profits, so it will try to show you don’t have a valid claim or that your injuries were your fault.
A Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help
You should be fairly and fully compensated for your family’s suffering from your injuries. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help with that.
Helping with the necessary paperwork and court documents.
Guiding your legal options for financial relief.
Having a legal professional negotiate with insurance on your behalf.
Helping you prepare for invasive or sensitive questioning.
Representing you if your personal injury claim needs to go to trial.
Call The Champion Firm Today
When someone you love has suffered the loss of consortium, they can file a claim after your personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault party. You can demand maximum compensation with help from an experienced and compassionate injury lawyer at The Champion Firm. To learn how much your family could be entitled to in loss of consortium related to your injury, call 404-596-8044 or submit a request online. We offer free case consultations, and there’s no cost to you until we win.
About the Author
The Champion Firm is a full-service personal injury law firm serving the greater Metro Atlanta area. Our award-winning team of attorneys specializes in car accidents, wrongful death, premises liability, and slip-and-fall cases. Learn more about our team here.