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Dealing with the loss of a loved one is incredibly difficult, no matter what the circumstances. If the death was caused by the negligence of a third party, the aftermath can be even more challenging.

People who are affected by wrongful death have legal rights. Surviving parties may seek compensation for wrongful death in Indiana “if the death of one is caused by the wrongful act or omission of another.”

Who can bring a wrongful death lawsuit?

Generally speaking, a wrongful death claim in Indiana is filed by the representative of the deceased person’s estate, assuming that the deceased is a legal adult. Usually, the representative will be defined by the deceased’s will and testament. If there’s no will, then a spouse or surviving adult child will typically be designated as the representative. If the deceased is a child, the parents must bring the wrongful death suit.

However, it is also possible for a someone who isn’t an immediate family member to hold this position. Other possible candidates include:

  • Close friends of the family or deceased
  • Business partners or financial dependents
  • Distant family members such as grandparents
  • Domestic or life partners

What compensation is available?

Indiana law does not allow damages for emotional distress. However, it is possible to seek compensation for:

  • Medical bills
  • Funeral expenses
  • The costs of filing a wrongful death suit
  • Earnings or benefits the deceased’s family would have received if the death not occurred

In Indiana, damages for wrongful death are capped at $300,000.

If you have questions about wrongful death, contact an experienced attorney.