A Seattle wrongful death attorney overviews the three types of damages you can sue for in a Washington State wrongful death lawsuit.

Collecting Damages: Economic Damages, Noneconomic Damages & Punitive Damages

Andrew Kim
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Personal Injury, Car Accidents, Motorcycle Accidents, Wrongful Death and Catastrofic Injuries Attorney

When you sue for wrongful death in Washington State, you are suing for specific damages—money sought for the loss of one person caused by another person. In other words, when someone is responsible for the death of another person, they are responsible for the consequences of that person’s death. 

There are three different types of wrongful death damages: 

  1. Economic Damages. These damages represent the financial losses suffered by the family due to its loved one’s death. Economic damages may include medical bills, loss of future wages, loss of benefits (such as health care or retirement), funeral expenses, and loss of inheritance. In the case of a stay-at-home parent, the spouse could sue for losing child care services that the loved one provided. 
  2. Noneconomic Damages. These damages represent losses that don’t involve a specific dollar amount, but rather losses that are emotional or otherwise abstract: pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of consortium, loss of love, loss of companionship, loss of society, and loss of care and protection. Unlike economic damages, these damages can be much more difficult to calculate. 
  3. Punitive Damages. If the party who is being sued for wrongful death was grossly negligent, a victim’s family may request punitive damages. In these cases, the company, person, or entity pays a fine to the family as punishment for their actions (or inactions) related to the accident and death. The amount sought for punitive damages can vary widely. 

When you are filing a wrongful death lawsuit, it is vital that you understand how your loved one’s death affected your life and what damages you should seek. At the Andrew Kim Law Firm, we can help you calculate your damages and seek the compensation that you deserve. To speak with a Seattle wrongful death attorney today, call to schedule a free, confidential consultation: 800.636.3676.