Yes, you do. You have what NJ law calls a loss of consortium claim. In a New Jersey car accident lawsuit, the spouse of the injured car accident victim has a right to recover for the loss of his or her spouse’s love, companionship and marital services when that loss is caused by the actions of another, such as the negligent driver in a car accident. In addition, New Jersey also allows recovery for the loss of the intimate relationship between the injured spouse and his/her husband or wife.
While the value of a spouse’s companionship is almost inestimable, spouses can recover for the benefits they enjoyed before their spouse was injured, but lost as a result of the wrongdoer’s actions. It can be difficult to assign a monetary amount to the value of love and companionship, but there are also more concrete “services” that are easier to value, such as:
- caring for your children,
- housework, such as cleaning and cooking, and
- yard work.
Because your husband was bedridden for 3 months after the car accident, he couldn’t do any of his normal daily activities, such as going to work, doing house chores and taking care of your children with you. As a result, you had to do his share of the work around the house including caring for your children solely by yourself.
However, if your husband is a homemaker, then the value of your consortium claim may be higher. For instance, if your husband is a homemaker and took care of 90% of the housework and chores around the house, you now have significantly more housework and chores to perform than you did before the car accident occurred.
Every car accident case is different. In some cases, emotional losses have far greater value than non-emotional ones, such as the services described above. In other cases, the non-emotional losses have more value. Therefore, you would need to describe in detail your relationship with your husband, what you both did in your daily lives prior to the accident and the changes in your relationship and lives after the car accident.
It is important to discuss your claim with an experienced NJ car or truck accident lawyer who knows how to prove a loss of consortium claim.
See Related NJ Car Accident Legal Article: NJ Car Accident Law: Can an Injured Car, Bus or Truck Victim’s Spouse Recover Damages?
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Phil Cipreitti has been helping injured car, bus and truck accident victims in NJ for over 35 years. If your spouse was injured in a car, truck or bus accident on the NJ Turnpike, AC Expressway or other New Jersey highways and you would like to discuss your spouse’s legal rights as well as your own legal rights, feel free to contact Phil T. Ciprietti, Esquire for a free initial consultation. 800.281.8695
*Disclaimer: Every case is unique and you should not take any action or make decisions in your case without speaking to a qualified car and truck accident lawyer in New Jersey. This website page does not provide legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. Use of the contact form on this website or emailing Mr. Ciprietti does not create any attorney-client relationship. In addition, confidential information should not be sent through the contact form.