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Losing a child: Wrongful death payouts for children

When you lose a loved one in a car accident or other situation in Florida, you probably think that regardless of who it is, the compensation should be high. Unfortunately, for the courts, there has to be something to base the price of that person's life on. The value of that person's life is going to be based on a few things, including the potential earnings and other factors, like his age.

No one really wants to think of a human as having a price tag, but with the price-setting procedures in place for wrongful deaths, it has to be done. For example, when a child passes away, the recovery for his or her life has to be based on the age, sex, life expectancy, health, habits and work expectancy of the child. The health, circumstances and ages of those trying to make a claim are also considered.

Because the claims can only be speculated on, then it can be hard to define what the child would have earned. For this reason, it's more common for a jury to award a small damage award for the loss of a child than a large one, like in the case of a mature, earning adult.

Another thing to consider about losing a child is that if the child was still a fetus, your case may not hold up in court in Florida. Some states don't recognize the fetus as a living child, so a different kind of claim, like medical malpractice, may be a better bet for making a claim on the death of an unborn child.

Source: FindLaw, "Wrongful Death Cases: Children and the Elderly," accessed March. 30, 2015

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