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What is loss of consortium?

If one of your loved ones dies as the result of a Connecticut motor vehicle accident, you have the right to sue the driver of the other car for the damages you sustained as a result of your loved one’s wrongful death. Loss of consortium is one of your damages for which you can sue.

Originally the term “loss of consortium” meant a surviving spouse’s loss of his or her ability to engage in sexual relations with his or her deceased spouse. As FindLaw explains, however, the term has long since expanded to include other forms of losses and other plaintiffs than just surviving spouses.

Loss of consortium proof

Today, surviving parents, children and siblings of the deceased, as well as his or her surviving spouse, can claim loss of consortium damages. Bear in mind, however, that loss of consortium represents one of your noneconomic damages; i.e., those to which you cannot attach a specific dollar amount. Consequently, you will need to be prepared to show clear and convincing evidence of your loss so your wrongful death jury can determine the proper dollar amount to attach to your loss of consortium damages.

If you are the surviving spouse, you likely will want to present evidence of the following:

  • Your current age and life expectancy and your spouse’s age and life expectancy at the time (s)he wrongfully died
  • The amount of love and stability that existed in your marriage
  • The living arrangements of you and your deceased spouse
  • The amount of companionship and care your deceased spouse provided to you
  • The amount of parenting help your deceased spouse provided to you
  • The amount of household help your deceased spouse provided to you

If, on the other hand, the deceased was your parent, sibling or child, you likely will want to present evidence regarding the amount of affection, nurturing, guidance, care, etc. you lost as a result of his or her wrongful death.

This is general educational information and not intended to provide legal advice.

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