If you get injured in an accident, you may decide to file a claim for damages to recoup some of your financial losses as a result of your injuries. But, if you are married, it may be possible for your spouse to file a secondary claim of loss of consortium.
Loss of consortium claims arise from the same incident but are filed on behalf of your spouse. In some cases, it may be appropriate to also file loss of consortium claims for other family members as well.
One common misconception regarding loss of consortium claims is that they can only be filed if a person’s spouse is killed. That is untrue, as these claims reflect the loss of companionship and other benefits of married life because of the accident — and those things can suffer even when a spouse is badly injured, not just killed.
How does it work?
Loss of consortium claims addresses losses that are difficult to financially quantify. It examines every aspect of a marital relationship, including loss of:
- Love and companionship
- Spousal services
- Sexual relations
Your personal injury attorney will attempt to place a dollar value on these losses your spouse experienced after your accident. For instance, suppose that your spouse was a homemaker and the primary caretaker of the children. But they also did the books for your business and the two of you shared a robust sex life.
Since the accident that injured them, however, your spouse can no longer tend to the kids, cook or clean the house. The concussion they suffered left them unable to focus on doing your finances for the business and they no longer have any interest in resuming marital relations since the accident.
You may be able to file a separate loss of consortium claim arising from the accident that injured your spouse. A personal injury attorney can offer the guidance you need during this difficult time.