An experienced personal injury attorney won’t just settle for reimbursement of medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering, but will go after all the damages to which you and your family members are entitled including mental anguish and loss of consortium. Serious injuries can take their toll on the entire family and have a long-lasting impact on mental as well as physical health.
Indiana courts recognize what’s known as a claim for loss of consortium. See Greene v. Westinghouse Electric Corp., 573 N.E.2d 452 (1991). The law states that “consortium does not consist alone of intangible mental and emotional elements, but embraces within its ambit also services and charges which one partner in the marriage performs for the other and have a monetary and pecuniary value.” Troue v. Marker (1969), 253 Ind. 284, 291, 252 N.E.2d 800, 805.
Under this doctrine spouses can maintain an action against a negligent party for the impact their partner’s injuries had on their marriage. The term consortium is rather archaic and generally associated with conjugal relations. In practice the claim compensates for more than a ruined sex life. Courts recognize that spouses lose the emotional support and parental participation due to the injury. These losses may in some cases be permanent.
When viewing the value of a consortium claim, courts take several factors into consideration. The nature and extent of injuries is of course primary. The length of the marriage, its stability and the perceived relation of the couple will all be under scrutiny. While revealing the intimate details of what transpires in one’s bedroom seems incredibly invasive, worse is losing the enjoyment and pleasure of a spouse’s company.
When seeking the services of a personal injury attorney make sure that lawyer will protect the rights of the victim’s spouse too. If you have questions about how to recover for mental anguish related to an injury, contact us for a free consultation. We restore lives and families.