A wrongful death occurs when a person is killed due to the negligence or misconduct of another individual, company or organization. A legal action for wrongful death belongs to the decedent's immediate family members, usually a surviving spouse and children, and sometimes parents. Under certain circumstances, unrelated minor children living with and supported by the decedent may also bring a claim for wrongful death. In order to bring a successful wrongful death cause of action in Indiana, the following elements must be present:
The general rule in Indiana in wrongful death cases is that one is entitled to recover both economic and non-economic damages which are suffered as a result of the loss of a loved one. Economic damages in a wrongful death case include an award for the financial contributions which the decedent would have made to his wife, children and/or parents had he or she survived. It also includes the recovery for funeral services in memory of the decedent and for burial costs. Non-economic damages include loss of love, companionship, comfort, affection, society, solace or moral support.