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What is “loss of consortium” in a motor vehicle accident?

On Behalf of | Aug 9, 2021 | Personal Injury

Among the many ways to receive compensation for damages that result from a motor vehicle accident, there exists something called loss of consortium. The aim of the law is to make people “whole,” or as close as possible to the condition before the accident. However, sometimes this is not possible.

When considering the impact of an accident, sometimes the family members are overlooked. There are legal damages that apply to the family members of a person injured or killed. This is where the loss of consortium can become a factor.

What is loss of consortium?

According to Cornell Law School, loss of consortium is when a family member is deprived of affection or sexual relations. The spouse, or another family member, of the injured party can sue for damages under loss of consortium.

A hypothetical situation that could qualify as a valid loss of consortium case

Larry is a construction project manager and a loving husband. He frequently travels all over the tri-state area of Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky managing construction projects. One day as Larry was coming back from a job site, he was hit by a drunk driver and lost the use of his legs.

Larry and his wife, Melinda, were excited to start a family by having children. Now, that is not possible. Larry is entitled to bring a suit for his damages, but what about Melinda? When Larry’s spine was broken, so were Melinda’s dreams of being a mother.

Melinda can bring a loss of consortium case because Larry is no longer able to have sexual relations or produce a child. A once vibrant, loving and active relationship has now turned cold due to Larry being a paraplegic. Larry was not the only one to be damaged in this tragic accident, Melinda, too, has a case for damages.

Getting help

If you are a family member of a loved one who was injured or killed in a car accident, a professional who is experienced in personal injury and motor vehicle accidents in the tri-state area is best equipped to discuss the merits of your case.