Bereavement is always difficult to deal with, but if the circumstances of death are complicated, it can be even more challenging. Dealing with the emotional trauma of bereavement, as well as the many practical losses that may follow from the death of someone you love, can be incredibly stressful and often leads to significant problems.
Many people do not know that dependents of the bereaved may be entitled to compensation for their loss. A dependent may be compensated for loss of income or services provided by the deceased, for example, childcare or driving, as these losses will have a significant financial impact on their life. Here at S.T. O’Sullivan & Co Solicitors in Ennis, we often represent dependents who make fatal injuries claims, and we will work with you to ensure that you receive the best possible outcomes.
Making a Fatal Injuries Claim: Important Information
If someone you love has died as a result of personal injury or medical negligence, including accidents at work or road traffic accidents, you may be in a position to make a fatal injuries claim. A claim can be made by any of the following dependents:
- The spouse of the deceased
- Co-habiting partner of 3 years or more
- Children or stepchildren of the deceased
- Parents of the deceased
- Siblings or half siblings
However, there can only be one fatal injury case per fatality, so all statutory dependents must be named within this case.
What Happens At An Inquest?
If an unexpected death, or a death where blame may be apportioned, has occurred, there will usually be an inquest to establish cause of death, amongst other particulars. This may involve medical or expert witnesses, statements from witnesses or others involved, post mortem reports and medical records if necessary. An inquest does not make decisions regarding liability for death, but often information will be revealed during an inquest that will be helpful in a future claim for compensation.
How Are Damages Awarded For Fatal Injuries?
When a fatal injuries case is considered, damages payments will be calculated according to three categories.
- Special damages. This category relates to expenses that have arisen as a direct result of the death, such as funeral expenses, inquest expenses and travel.
- Emotional distress. An amount limited to €35,000 is allowable, which will usually be divided between all statutory dependents.
- Loss of dependency. This relates to the actual financial cost of the loss to the dependents in the case. Individual circumstances, including services performed by the deceased such as childcare and driving, will be taken into consideration when a case is made, and this element of damages will include loss of earnings where these impact on the dependents. Your solicitor will work with you to ensure that the impact of losing the deceased is considered with regard to every aspect of your life.
Find Personal Injury Solicitors in Ennis, Co Clare
If you have suffered bereavement or want to find out more about fatal injuries claims, you will need to speak to a solicitor* who has experience in this area. Contact S.T. O’Sullivan & Co Solicitors in Clare for a free consultation without obligation today. Simply call into our office in Ennis, Co.Clare, contact us online or call us on +353 (065) 6820620. We guarantee to call you back to discuss your case within one business day.
*In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or a proportion of any award or settlemen