Can You Recover Damages for the Death of an Unborn Child in an Accident?
Losing someone close to you is one of the most painful experiences imaginable, especially if their death could have been prevented. Typically following the loss of a loved one due to the negligent, reckless, or criminal act of another person, a wrongful death claim is filed against the party responsible. Unfortunately, the law is more complicated when the deceased is an unborn child. In today’s blog post, the Dunk Law Firm team explains what a wrongful death claim is and what to do in the tragic event an unborn child is lost in an accident.
What Is a Wrongful Death Claim?
A wrongful death claim is a type of civil lawsuit that can be filed by the deceased’s surviving family members, such as their spouse, children, siblings, or parents. Wrongful death claims are not criminal, so instead of seeking to jail the person responsible for the death, wrongful death suits seek compensation instead.
Compensation in a wrongful death case covers any expenses the family has incurred, losses they have suffered, and the emotional pain and suffering family members endure as a direct result of their loved one’s death. This may include the reimbursement of funeral and burial expenses, for instance.
However, it is important to know that wrongful death laws vary state by state—including when it comes to the loss of an unborn baby.
Wrongful Death Laws For Unborn Children
If you have recently lost an unborn child in a car crash or other accident, seeking compensation through a lawsuit is likely the last thing in your mind. Yet, initiating a wrongful death claim can make your ordeal a bit easier by helping you and your loved ones cover your accident-related expenses without going into debt or incurring further hardship.
However, can you receive compensation for the loss of a fetus?
The short answer is—it depends. Certain states have wrongful death laws in the books that allow or have allowed parents and other relatives to successfully claim damages for the loss of an unborn child, such as Louisiana and Texas; other states, like California for instance, specifically state that you cannot receive compensation for the death of an unborn baby. As you may have guessed, this is because there is much ongoing debate in the United States surrounding the “personhood” of unborn children. Since each state’s political majority tends to have different ideas surrounding this issue, their wrongful death policies vary as well.
While this probably isn’t the answer you were searching for, the good news is that you aren’t alone. Dunk Law Firm is a national law firm that represents clients throughout the United States. We offer free consultations so you can discuss your situation with us and receive legal advice at no charge or obligation to you. Regardless of where you live, we are available to provide you with honest, empathetic, and straightforward legal advice to help you and your family determine what is best for you during this trying time. We are happy to help you determine whether you have a claim at no cost or obligation to you.
If you or someone you know has lost an unborn child due to a car accident, we understand this is a devastating and complicated time in your life. Dunk Law Firm can help. Contact us for the compassionate and effective legal guidance you deserve during this period.