When a loved one is killed or seriously injured, their partner might be left to deal with huge life changes. One of the hardest aspects for the remaining spouse to deal with after death or life-altering injury is the loss of love and companionship.
When death or injury results in the absence of a spouse’s emotional support, it’s possible to seek compensation from the party who was responsible for the harm. This is accomplished through a loss of companionship claim.
What Is Loss of Companionship?
Loss of companionship is legally recognized as the emotional damage that accompanies the loss of a spouse. A claim can cover the loss of :
- Parenting aid
- Shared household duties
- Emotional support
It’s most common to sue for loss of companionship after death. Sometimes, personal injuries after an accident can be so severe that the spouse is no longer able to function in their former capacity.
If your spouse is still living, you’ll need to prove that their injuries have robbed them of the ability to provide the same emotional presence that existed prior to the accident.
What Doesn’t Count?
A loss of companionship claim cannot be pursued by a surviving partner unless the couple was legally married.
Loss of companionship is designed to address emotional damages. You can also seek compensation for physical losses, like financial support and sexual relations. For physical losses, you’ll need to pursue a loss of consortium claim.
How Do You Prove Loss of Companionship?
There are four criteria for proving loss of companionship. You must show:
- The marriage was stable and loving
- The couple lived together and shared a bed
- Amount of care and companionship between spouses
- Life expectancy of deceased or injured spouse
Because these claims can be complex, you’ll likely need to work with a personal injury or wrongful death attorney to build a case demonstrating the level of companionship that existed in the marriage prior to the accident.
How Is Loss of Companionship Calculated?
Calculating loss of companionship can be complicated. Your attorney will work with you to illustrate your spouse’s involvement and the ways that your life has changed after a partner’s accident or injury.
A lawyer may help to acquire statements from employers, teachers, or mental health professionals.
After your attorney demonstrates how your life has changed due to the loss of your spouse, a court may compare your situation to similar cases that have been settled in the past. This can help to provide a reference for a fair compensation value.
Help Is Available
If you’ve suffered a loss of companionship and are interested in pursuing compensation, Harlan Law Firm can help. Our documented client success results and testimonies should make you feel at ease to get the justice you deserve.
Contact us today to arrange a free consultation with an experienced and compassionate attorney.