When someone is injured due to another’s negligent actions, they can pursue a claim for compensation through a Florida personal injury lawsuit. Depending on the type of accident, the extent of the plaintiff’s injuries, and the defendant’s conduct that gave rise to plaintiff’s injuries, there are various types of damages that an injury victim may recover. These include compensation for past and future medical expenses, lost wages, as well as for non-economic damages such as pain and suffering.
Many Florida personal injury accidents, however, affect more than just the accident victim. Indeed, in many accidents, a victim’s injuries can impact their marriage. Thus, the spouse of an injury victim may be able to pursue a claim against the defendant. This is referred to as a claim for the spouse’s loss of consortium.
In Florida, courts consider loss of consortium damages to include company, cooperation, and aid of the other. This consists of the sexual relationship, affection, solace, comfort, companionship, fellowship, society, and assistance that a spouse provides. While a loss of consortium claim will not result in a double recovery for any amount that the injury victim receives, a successful claim may compensate a spouse for the injured spouse’s inability to perform work they would normally do around the home, such as raise children.
Proving Loss of Consortium Damages
Florida law refers to the spouse that was involved in the accident as the “impaired spouse.” The spouse pursuing the loss of consortium claim is referred to as the “deprived spouse.” To succeed in a loss of consortium claim, a deprived spouse must establish:
- That there was a valid marriage between the injured spouse and deprived spouse at the time of the accident;
- That the impaired spouse’s injury was significant enough to justify damages;
- That the defendant’s conduct was the cause of the loss of consortium; and
- There was an actual loss of consortium due to the injuries sustained by the impaired spouse.
An important concept that Florida injury victims and their spouses should understand is that Florida courts have routinely held that a loss of consortium claim is derivative of the injured spouse’s underlying claim against the defendant. This means that the success of a loss of consortium claim is contingent upon the success of the impaired spouse’s claim. Thus, it is crucial to a spouse’s loss of consortium claim that their spouse is represented by an experienced Florida personal injury attorney.
Has Your Spouse Been Injured in a Florida Accident?
If your husband or wife has recently been injured in a Florida car crash, or any other kind of Florida personal injury accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation through a Florida loss of consortium claim. At the South Florida personal injury law firm of Friedman Rodman & Frank, we represent injury victims and their spouses pursue claims for compensation against those responsible for their injuries. To learn more, call 877-448-8585 to schedule a free consultation today.
More Blog Posts:
Florida Premises Liability Based on a Third-Party’s Criminal Activity, South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, published March 22, 2019.
The Concept of Personal Jurisdiction in Florida Personal Injury Cases, South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, published March 7, 2019.