Law Offices of Michael J. Schneider a professional corporation
907-331-3549 Anchorage, Alaska Personal Injury Law Firm
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Can anyone sue for wrongful death?

Immediately after losing a loved one unexpectedly in Anchorage, you will likely be left to deal with a number of questions. The most important of these may be surrounding the circumstances in which he or she died. If foul play or negligence appear to be involved, the issue of a wrongful death lawsuit suddenly arises. While such action may be viewed as a means to hold the responsible parties accountable, it also may be borne out of the necessity to deal with the expenses of your loved one's death. 

Yet can anyone bring such action? Not according to Alaska state law. In Section 09.55.580 of the state's Code of Civil Procedure, it says that only the personal representative of your loved one's estate can bring a wrongful death lawsuit on his or her behalf. When determining what to include in a judgment for wrongful death, the court or jury hearing the case will consider the direct pecuniary (financial) losses incurred with one's death, such as medical and funeral expenses or the amount he or she would have contributed as income throughout his or her anticipated career. It can also consider the following non-financial damages: 

  • The loss of assistance or services your loved may have provided to his or her beneficiaries 
  • The loss of consortium you (or another who is the decedent's spouse) experience 
  • The loss of contributions for support your loved one provided 
  • The loss of training and education your loved one might have provided to beneficiaries

The judgment from a wrongful death claim is meant to benefit only your loved one's spouse and children. If he or she has no issue, then it can be included in the distribution of the personal property of his or her estate, but only to the amount determined to be financial damages. 

 

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