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Wrongful death awards for the elderly, children may be small

Traffic accidents can involve anyone from infants to the elderly. When they do, those involved are at risk of suffering serious injuries or death.

When a child or elderly person is killed in an accident, it poses a significant problem for the court. The court has to determine a value for that person's death based on a variety of factors, some of which include:

  • Earning capacity
  • Health
  • Age
  • Past earnings or wages

As you probably realize, determining a child's potential earnings or showing that an elderly person could continue to bring in an income could be difficult.

Families know that no amount of money is going to bring their loved ones back, but the compensation that could be provided may give them something to rely on when they might have significant financial losses now or in the future.

It's possible to estimate how much a child might have earned in the future by looking at their education and interests. It's possible to see how much an elder could continue to bring in, too, though their earning capacity may be low.

In either case, the likelihood of receiving significant damages is low, because it's hard to prove exactly how much these individuals would have earned. Unlike a person who was working at the time of their death, there's no way to know what a child might have earned or if an elder would have continued to bring in an income for any length of time.

If you lose a loved one, your attorney can help you fight for the highest award possible. You shouldn't have to deal with financial losses alone.

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