Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Tennessee?
Under Tennessee law, the surviving spouse has the first right to file such a claim. If no surviving spouse exists, the following may file:
- Children or next of kin (close living relatives)
- The deceased’s personal estate representative for the benefit of the surviving spouse, children, or next of kin
- The deceased’s parents, if the deceased was a dependent at the time of death
- An estate administrator
Damages in Wrongful Death Cases
Damages that may be available in a Tennessee wrongful death claim include:
- Expenses for the funeral and burial
- The loss of earning capacity of the deceased from the time of injury until his or her death
- The loss of enjoyment of life for the deceased during the above time period
- The mental anguish suffered by the deceased due to the injuries
- Loss of wages or benefits that the deceased would have accrued if he or she had not died
- The physical and emotional suffering of the surviving family members
- The expenses incurred by the family members related to the death
- Loss of companionship and love suffered by surviving family members
When a wrongful death occurs as a result of recklessness or deliberate misconduct, punitive damages may be sought as well. These are damages meant to punish the at-fault party and to discourage any future type of similar wrongdoing.
Call us at (423) 799-3030 for a free consultation with one of our Chattanooga wrongful death lawyers.