What Damages Can Be Recovered in Virginia Wrongful Death Claims?

What damages can be recovered in wrongful death claims.There are plenty of misconceptions about what damages are recoverable in a wrongful death case in Virginia. Can you recover for the pain of the decedent? Can you recover for lost wages? What about medical bills? What about future lost wages? Here is what the law is in Virginia on wrongful death damages.

What You Need to Know About Virginia Code § 8.01-52. (Amount of damages)

The jury or the court, as the case may be, in any such action under § 8.01-50 may award such damages as to it may seem fair and just. The verdict or judgment of the court trying the case without a jury shall include, but may not be limited to, damages for the following:

  1. Sorrow, mental anguish, and solace which may include society, companionship, comfort, guidance, kindly offices and advice of the decedent;
  2. Compensation for reasonably expected loss of (i) income of the decedent and (ii) services, protection, care and assistance provided by the decedent;
  3. Expenses for the care, treatment and hospitalization of the decedent incident to the injury resulting in death;
  4. Reasonable funeral expenses; and
  5. Punitive damages may be recovered for willful or wanton conduct, or such recklessness as evinces a conscious disregard for the safety of others.

Damages recoverable under 3, 4 and 5 above shall be specifically stated by the jury or the court, as the case may be. Damages recoverable under 3 and 4 above shall be apportioned among the creditors who rendered such services, as their respective interests may appear. Competent expert testimony shall be admissible in proving damages recoverable under 2 above. The court shall apportion the costs of the action as it shall deem proper.

If you are interested in talking with our team of experts about your potential wrongful death claim, call our main office in Fairfax at (703)584-7277. BenGlassLaw has additional locations throughout Virginia including in Fredericksburg, Richmond, Arlington, Alexandria, Dumfries and more.

Ben Glass
Ben Glass is a nationally recognized Virginia injury, medical malpractice, and long-term disability attorney