Understanding Loss of Consortium in California
In personal injury cases, the concept of “loss of consortium” plays a significant role in determining the damages awarded to a victim and their loved ones. It refers to the denial or impairment of a family relationship altered by an accident‚—such as loss of love and companionship—caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongful act. If you have suffered a loss of companionship, moral support, or intimacy following an accident, contact a California personal injury lawyer to understand your legal options.
In California, only spouses and registered domestic partners may claim loss of consortium. These damages are subjective, which can make it difficult to prove and quantify in a personal injury or wrongful death claim. Fortunately, the lawyers at Eric Ratinoff Law Corp. know how to demonstrate negligence to seek the full extent of the damages you incurred.
What Is Loss of Consortium?
Loss of consortium refers to the intangible damages suffered by a spouse or registered domestic partner due to a partner’s injury or wrongful death. It recognizes the injuries suffered by a victim may extend beyond physical and financial losses to encompass the emotional, intimate, and supportive aspects of a close relationship.
When assessing damages in a loss of consortium claim, various factors may determine the value of your losses, including the following:
- Nature and extent of the relationship: The court may evaluate the strength and quality of the relationship before and after the injury. This involves factors such as length of marriage, mutual love and affection, shared activities, and other relevant details.
- The severity of the injuries: The severity and permanency of the injuries suffered are assessed.
- Medical evidence: Expert testimony and medical reports may be presented to demonstrate the impact of the injury on the victim’s ability to provide companionship, support, and service.
For an assessment of your case, speak with the lawyers at Eric Ratinoff Law Corp. Each case is unique, and the court considers the circumstances on a case-by-case basis.
Proving Loss of Consortium in California
The following elements must be met to establish a valid loss of consortium claim:
- Valid underlying claim: There must be an underlying claim upon which the loss of consortium damages are based, such as personal injury, medical malpractice, or wrongful death.
- Causal connection: You must demonstrate that the injury was caused by the at-fault party’s negligent actions or inactions.
- Martial relationship: You were lawfully married or in a registered domestic partnership with the victim when you suffered the loss of consortium damages.
- Impact on relationship: You must establish that the injury has had a substantial and negative impact on the specific aspects of the relationship, such as companionship, affection, sexual relations, support, and services.
If you believe you have a loss of consortium claim, consult a personal injury lawyer to understand your rights, assess the viability of your claim, and navigate every aspect of the legal process on your behalf.
Speak With the Personal Injury Lawyers at Eric Ratinoff Law Corp.
Loss of consortium is a significant aspect of personal injury law in California, acknowledging the emotional losses spouses suffer due to the negligence or wrongful acts of someone else. At Eric Ratinoff Law Corp., we have over three decades of experience successfully recovering maximum compensation available for both tangible and intangible losses on our clients’ behalf.
Because we work on a contingency fee basis, you do not worry about legal fees unless we win your case. Speak with one of our personal injury lawyers today by calling (916) 970-9100 or filling out a contact form.