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Wrongful death claim facts for kids

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Wrongful death is a claim against a person who can be held liable for another person's death. This can be because of negligence, misconduct, or murder. Wrongful death lawsuits usually follow a criminal trial. They may use the same evidence but they have a lower standard of proof.

The claim is brought in a civil action, usually by close relatives, based on tort laws. This is a relatively new concept. Common law did not allow for this type of lawsuit. In the United States, state and federal laws have changed during the last century to allow this kind of action.

Damages

In law, damages are an award, usually of money. It is to be paid to a person as compensation for loss or injury. Damages for wrongful death may include:

Damages may also include punitive damages which are intended to reform or deter the defendant and others from doing the same thing again.

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