According to The New York Times, the U.S. government will pay $2.5 million to the family of Robert Stevens, a National Enquirer photo editor who was killed in 2001 by anthrax. Ms. Stevens, the deceased's widow, claims in her lawsuit that the government was negligent in stopping an Army lab from creating the anthrax that killed her husband and four others.
In order to prove a wrongful death claim, four components of negligence must be present:
- The defendant had a duty to the deceased.
- The defendant failed in that duty (also known as breach of duty).
- The fatality was caused by the breach of duty.
- The survivors were dependant on the deceased and are entitled to damages as a result of their loss.
It is hard to put a monetary number on the loss of a loved one, so a settlement usually consists of three types of damages:
- Loss of income the deceased would have provided.
- Expenses related to the death (medical bills and cost of the funeral and burial for example).
- Lost benefits from the death (insurance and retirement as well as loss of emotional support and companionship).
Our wrongful death attorney s have represented many families over the years who have lost a loved one in a devastating accident. If you lost someone due to another's negligence, do not hesitate to contact us for a free initial consultation. Our wrongful death lawyers will evaluate your claim and answer all your questions.
For more information on wrongful death claim s, visit our Wrongful Death Glossary.