death laws

Indiana’s Wrongful Death Laws and Caps: What You Must Know

by Lily White
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The term “wrongful death” is used when someone passes away because of someone else’s negligent or reckless actions. In these instances, the surviving family members can file a lawsuit if they lack financial assistance or companionship due to their loved one’s untimely death. In addition, personal injury, medical malpractice, and workplace injury cases can lead to wrongful death lawsuits.

If you qualify to file for a wrongful death lawsuit, you can request damages, which are financial awards given to survivors to restore their finances. No monetary settlement can bring a loved one back, but damages can make it easier for survivors to pay their bills and care for their children.

Damages can be both economic and non-economic. Economic damages can include money to cover the deceased’s medical and burial bills. In addition, the law usually gives the surviving spouse the funds the deceased would have earned for a time. The judge may also rule to award damages to compensate for the loss of parental love or romantic companionship that the victim’s children and spouse have lost.

Can I File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Indiana?

Usually, only certain relatives are permitted to sue on behalf of the deceased. These include parents/legal guardians, children (including adopted children), and spouses. If the victim was a child, both parents of the child must file a wrongful death lawsuit if the parents are still married. If divorced, only the parent who had custody of the child can file a wrongful death lawsuit.

In the state of Indiana, the individual who is the personal representative for the deceased’s estate can file a wrongful death lawsuit. The qualifying family members are beneficiaries of the deceased’s estate and will collect their monies from the court. If the case is won, the beneficiaries will decide how to divide the proceeds properly.

Recovering Damages In a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

If you’re an Indiana resident and want a negligent party to pay for the loss of a loved one, you should find a specialized law firm to manage your case, say Yosha wrongful death lawyers. Your attorneys can help you win your claim or lawsuit and receive the compensation you deserve.

In Indiana, the deceased’s spouse is usually first in line to recover wrongful death damages. The minor, dependent children of the victim will receive damages as well. If the deceased had no children, the surviving dependent who is next of kin would receive the settlement. If the victim were an adult but unmarried and without children, the deceased’s parents would receive the money in the wrongful death lawsuit.

Indiana’s Payment Caps

Caps are the limits placed on the amount of damages that can be recovered in a wrongful death case. In Indiana, the cap amount depends on the type of wrongful death lawsuit you’re filing.

For instance, if death is caused by medical malpractice, the cap is a $1.8 million cap. However, if a government entity is the cause of the wrongful death, the cap is $700,000. If you’re filing for loss of love and companionship, you can receive up to $300,000 in damages.

Regardless of the specific damages, you’re filing for you will likely be able to recover a reasonable amount for burial and medical expenses. In addition, if you file for a wrongful death lawsuit, you can recover the money used to administer the deceased’s estate unless you’re filing because you’ve survived your child.

Surviving spouses and dependent children, and the surviving dependent next-of-kin, can seek damages for future earnings and lost wages. These individuals can also file for loss of affection, loss of household services, and loss of parental care. There are no caps for these damages.

Bottom Line

Find a qualified team ready to consult with you to find out the details of your case and let you know which steps to take to ensure your case is handled fairly. Schedule your consultation after your loved one’s death as soon as possible, as you need to respect the state’s statute of limitations in such cases.  Your professional wrongful death attorneys in Indiana will start working on your behalf to help you win your wrongful death case.


By Michael Hawkins

Bio: When it comes to educating the public on legal matters, few people are as determined as Michael Hawkins. From discovering issues of interest that concern all of us to offering actionable articles and guides to those in need, Michael is relentless in his journey of helping people make sense of the legal system. With dozens of pieces published in magazines, news outlets, and online journals, Michael is here to translate legalese into plain English so you can understand your rights and make the system work for your benefit.


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