Car accidents can be life-changing events. It doesn’t only affect the lives of the people who are involved directly in the incident, but also the spouse of the injury victim suffers. Luckily, the law allows the spouse to file a claim as well as the injury victim. These claims are known as loss of consortium. If you suffered loss of consortium in a Madison County car wreck, call our firm. An experienced attorney could help you through this difficult time.
Understanding Loss of Consortium
Loss of consortium (also known in some cases as loss of affection or loss of companionship) is a unique aspect of a personal injury lawsuit.
In most cases, the person involved in the car accident is the one who files the lawsuit. However, in loss of consortium, it is usually the affected family member or the spouse who goes to court and makes a claim.
The idea behind the loss of consortium case is that the defendant’s action compromised a person’s ability to provide affection, love, comfort, security, companionship, and sexual relations. Spouses can consider this as part of the losses they experienced due to the accident.
In Illinois, loss of consortium has unique aspects attached to it. For example, Illinois breaks down the loss of consortium into two categories:
- Functional losses – the loss of one’s service to their family and loved ones
- Sentimental losses – the loss of affection, love, and sexual relationships
How are Madison County Loss of Consortium Claims Determined?
The loss of consortium can be difficult to quantify. You can’t easily calculate the monetary equivalent of the pain, suffering, grief, and loss of companionship the family members have experienced.
For this reason, the monetary value for the loss of consortium claim is typically determined by the discretion of the jury or judge.
In other cases, you also have the option to get the help of expert witnesses who can demonstrate the correct amount of money needed to compensate for the loss of consortium.
Who Can File the Loss of Consortium in Illinois?
Usually, only legal spouses are permitted to file loss of consortium in Illinois. However, courts have continually had to address cases where the complainant is an unmarried partner. So, there might be some changes in how the loss of consortium works in Illinois in the future.
There are other ways for direct family members to seek compensation instead of just the legal spouse. These are known as loss of society claims.
Call a Madison County Car Crash Lawyer for Loss of Consortium Claims
Filing a loss of consortium lawsuit is not an easy process. Discussing your potential claim with a lawyer can be helpful. Contact an attorney experienced in handling claims for loss of consortium in Madison County car wrecks.