What is a Surviving Spouse’s Role in a Wrongful Death Case?

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What Is a Surviving Spouse’s Role in a Wrongful Death Case? 

The loss of your husband or wife is absolutely heart wrenching. Knowing that you will never get to see the person you love can send you into a deep depression. While some people sit in a state of shock, sorrow, and a deep sadness, others (as a defense mechanism) try to shut the pain out and attempt to deny or run away from the situation. In either case, a surviving spouse may not be able to mentally function properly or absorb critical information during this very difficult and overwhelming time.

When you receive the life-changing news that your husband or wife has passed away, it is normal to go through the stages of grief. You should allow yourself time to grieve for your spouse, but it is important to note that you shouldn’t sit in this place for too long. While you will never forget your spouse, and you will still have moments where you will break down and cry, you need to make sure you are pursuing justice and just compensation.

Surviving spouses sometimes are so sad that they do nothing following the death of their husband or wife. While it is normal to be so sad and overwhelmed, it is in your best interest to have a role during this painful time. 

A Spouse’s Role in a Wrongful Death

If a drunk driver, reckless driver, or negligent driver took your loved one from you, that driver should be punished in criminal court and civil court. As a surviving spouse, you can play a role in teaching the negligent person a lesson and holding him accountable in civil court. By doing nothing, you will miss out on seeking justice and just compensation. 

For this reason, here are five things you can do within the days and months following your spouse’s wrongful death:

  • Grieve the loss of your spouse
  • Seek the help of a professional counselor
  • File a wrongful death lawsuit
  • Obtain a copy of the police report and autopsy report
  • Speak with a wrongful death lawyer

Although no amount of money can take away your pain or bring back your spouse, later down the road, you may be glad that you played a role in defending your spouse’s death and bringing a claim against the negligent party. This is why you need to speak with an experienced wrongful death lawyer about your case. 

Even if you don’t think you have a case because your spouse didn’t work, you may be able to collect for other damages. For example, in the case of the death of a housewife, the surviving spouse and family can seek damages for loss of services and other financial damages. 


Don’t dismiss your case without speaking to a knowledgeable wrongful death attorney at Shane Smith Law during a free consultation. Call (980) 246-2656 today.


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