A serious injury often affects those who are close to the accident victim. The aftermath of such an injury can be particularly hard on the spouse of the injury victim. For many couples, marriage is a partnership; spouses rely on one another for support in all aspects of their lives, from help with household maintenance and child rearing to emotional and intimate companionship. The loss of this aid, support, and company due to one spouse’s injury in an accident is known as loss of consortium, and is a form of damages for which the spouse who was not injured may have the right to seek compensation.
Generally, a marriage is required for a loss of consortium claim. Other relationships may bare several similarities to marriage and cause much of the same kinds of burdens on the other person, but a marital relationship signifies an explicit agreement to share the responsibilities and burdens of daily life with another person, and to share a relationship of mutual support and affection. When an injury interferes with one partner’s ability to participate fully in their marital relationship, the other partner suffers and is entitled to be made whole insofar as the law can provide. While an unmarried romantic partner, a roommate, or a sibling may suffer some of those same burdens, the nature of the relationship is different enough that the law does not provide the same sort of remedy.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, contact The Law Offices of Gregg A. Williams today!