| Read Time: 3 minutes | Personal Injury
wrongful death settlement

A family member’s death is tragic and heartbreaking and a potential source of monetary hardship.

No amount of compensation will soften the blow. But a wrongful death lawsuit may help surviving family members deal with a loved one’s absence.

Wrongful death lawsuits for medical malpractice help support families of someone wrongfully or negligently killed by a hospital, doctor, or medical caregiver.

Family members can recoup money tantamount to the “worth” of that person’s life. However, it is tremendously challenging to calculate a human’s monetary value.

For this reason, determining a wrongful death settlement involves balancing multiple factors. The outcome can vary greatly depending on the different elements of every unique case.

Wrongful Death Compensation

To determine the average payout for medical negligence resulting in death, every individual case must be assessed in detail.

Factors a court reviews include the victim’s age and health at the time of death and the victim’s earning capacity. Earning capacity can be especially relevant if the victim supported a spouse or young children or contributed to their family’s living expenses.

The accident or injury that caused the victim’s death affects settlement amounts. The victim’s education and training are also a factor.

Other influences that play a part in a settlement calculator include whether the victim sustained substantial medical bills or suffered for an extended period before death.

Survivors may seek compensation for losses, including:

  • Funeral expenses,
  • Physical pain and suffering of the victim before death,
  • Medical treatment costs,
  • Hospital stays,
  • Emotional anguish, and
  • Loss of companionship.

Poulos & Coates, LLP can help you evaluate your situation. Together, we can discuss the typical payout for your specific medical malpractice wrongful death claim.

Through our commitment to delivering superior representation, we have won over $300 million for our clients through jury verdicts and settlements.

We can help you hold your loved one’s wrongdoer accountable and seek the justice you and they deserve.

How Are Wrongful Death Settlements Paid Out?

The negligent medical practitioner who wronged you will have liability insurance. That liability insurance pays your wrongful death settlement.

However, insurance companies have policy limit amounts and will not pay more than that maximum sum. After insurance pays, the negligent party is accountable for any amount over what insurance covers.

For example, say a medical professional has a $500,000 cap on their medical malpractice insurance. If they lose a wrongful death lawsuit and the judge awards $550,000 in damages, they must cover the extra $50,000.

Often though, wrongful death from medical malpractice cases settle before reaching trial. It’s not uncommon for defendants to opt to negotiate an award outside of court to avoid publicity and media coverage.

A settlement may also happen when plaintiffs want to avoid the emotional stress from an ongoing trial.

A Wrongful Death Lawyer Can Help

Poulos & Coates, LLP is the only law firm in New Mexico that retains a lawyer/doctor (JD/MD) on every medical malpractice wrongful death case.

We are also one of the few plaintiff’s law firms with a nurse on staff. These healthcare professionals understand both the medical and law fields and can help you obtain the justice and compensation you deserve.

With decades of experience helping victims of wrongful death, Poulos & Coates can assess your case and calculate the proper wrongful death settlement for your suffering.

Call us today at 575-639-9538 for a free consultation.

Author Photo

Greig Coates, M.D., J.D.

Over the last thirty years, Dr. Coates has successfully represented plaintiffs in every conceivable type of medical malpractice lawsuit–from single-physician cases to complex litigation involving over a dozen doctors and several hospitals. Dr. Coates has taken several thousand physician depositions in his career involving every known physician specialty and sub-specialty, and almost as many depositions involving hospital personnel such as nurses, techs, and administrators. He has tried several dozen cases to successful verdicts.

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