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Michigan’s Wrongful Death Act

Michigan’s Wrongful Death Act

by John T. Alexander – Michigan Personal Injury Attorney

We all have a right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as our founding fathers attested to in the Declaration of Independence.  This concept is recognized and codified in Michigan’s Wrongful Death Act.

In Michigan, if someone dies because of the fault of another person or company, the at fault person is liable for money damages to the family of the decedent.  The most common fatalities occur because of automobile accidents.  But the Wrongful Death Act is not limited to auto accidents.

Fatalities may happen at the work place.  They may happen as a result of a neighbor’s actions.  They may happen driving golf carts.  It may happen in a hospital or nursing home.  Any accidental death that occurred, if it was the fault of another person, the family may be entitled to money damages.

What types of money damages are allowed?

  1. the decedent’s funeral and burial expenses may be claimed. 
  2. if the decedent suffered any conscious pain and suffering before the death, that is a recognized element of damages.
  3. any financial support that the decedent provided is a recognizable claim.
  4. the fourth element of damages is called loss of consortium.  This means the emotional support, the advice, and the general friendship that the decedent offered to his blood relatives.

Generally speaking if  a large family lost somebody, the closer you were to the decedent, the more you lost.  It is commonly accepted by the courts that the spouse and children  lose the most if a parent dies.

If you would like any further information about Michigan’s Wrongful Death Act or are in need of a Michigan Personal Injury Attorney you may call me at 248-290-5600.

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