Reading Wrongful Death Settlements

If you’ve recently lost a close family member due to someone else’s negligent or criminal act, you know how little money can do to make up for the immense loss you’ve sustained. Seeking civil compensation for specific forms of harm you have to endure because of your loved one’s death can still be key to maximizing your overall quality of life moving forward. Cases of this nature generally end with private settlements rather than trials in civil court.

Reading wrongful death settlements can be uniquely difficult to pursue in both legal and personal terms, but they can also be important to preserving your whole family’s financial security and general well-being. If you want the best chance possible of getting the best possible settlement offer, you should strongly consider working with a seasoned wrongful death attorney who has experience getting positive results from cases like yours in the past.

What Losses Should a Wrongful Death Settlement Cover?

The purpose of a wrongful death settlement after a fatal accident in Reading isn’t to completely erase the loss your family has suffered or to try to replace the person you lost with a one-time financial windfall. Instead, the goal is to reimburse you for specific financial and emotional damages you have suffered and will likely suffer in the future as a direct result of your family member’s wrongful death.

With that in mind, it’s important to account for losses like these when negotiating for a settlement during a wrongful death case:

  • Lost financial support the deceased person would’ve provided you, including lost future value of inheritance
  • Lost love, companionship, and consortium
  • Lost guidance and advice
  • Lost help with household tasks
  • Medical bills and other expenses the deceased person’s accident caused them between when they got hurt and when they ultimately passed away from those injuries
  • Funeral, burial, and estate administration expenses

Support from experienced legal counsel can be key to identifying the specific losses you need to recover for and assigning them a fair value during settlement negotiations.

Rules for Distributing Wrongful Death Settlement Proceeds

Pennsylvania law sets out specific rules for who should get what amount of money from a wrongful death settlement in Reading. The most straightforward scenario is if the deceased person only has a surviving spouse but no surviving children or parents, in which case the spouse gets the entire settlement amount. Likewise, if a deceased person only has surviving children or only has surviving parents, those people split the settlement amount evenly between them.

Things get more complicated if multiple family members are eligible to receive settlement funds, but in general, the deceased person’s spouse always gets the first $30,000 of settlement money, and then the remaining money is split evenly between the spouse and all other eligible family members. No matter what, though, family members other than the deceased person’s spouse, children, and parents—for example, their siblings—aren’t eligible to receive money from a wrongful death settlement.

A Reading Attorney Can Help With Pursuing a Wrongful Death Settlement

No one wants to be in a position where they have to negotiate a financial settlement to make up for the life of a loved one being unfairly cut short. If you’re facing this kind of situation, you’ll want help from seasoned legal counsel from start to finish of the process.

Reading wrongful death settlements are much easier to get favorable results from with a well-known and winning lawyer on your side. Call us today to learn more.