Damages in a Georgia wrongful death claim are calculated as if the victim had survived. In other words, the court calculates damages as losses sustained by the victim. Though the wrongful death claim is filed by surviving family members, the court views the family as the victim's representatives.
Georgia's wrongful death decedent perspective means the victim's family cannot recover damages for their own emotional harm or for the support they would have otherwise received from the victim. Georgia courts award pain and suffering compensation based on what was experienced by the victim. Clayton County wrongful death attorney Shane Smith represents families who have lost loved ones in auto accidents, truck accidents and DUI accidents.
Heirs in a Georgia wrongful death case may file a claim for damages for the full value of the life of the decedent. An estate's administrator has the right to file a claim for pre-death damages such as medical expenses, funeral expenses and possibly the decedent's pain and suffering prior to death.
The estate's administrator's claim may not be brought by the heirs, though an heir may be the administrator. This claim is for damages unique to the estate including medical expenses, funeral and burial expenses.
Therefore, in Georgia wrongful death cases there are typically two claims, one by the heirs and one by the estate's administrator.
You should hire an experienced Clayton County wrongful death attorney if you will file a lawsuit on behalf of a family member who died due to another's negligence. Call the Law Offices of Shane Smith for a free consultation.