personal injury lawyer baltimore

Can Parents Sue For the Wrongful Death of Their Child in Maryland?


Few things are as devastating to a parent than the death of their child. the emotional loss feels unbearable. When the death is the result of another’s negligence, the pain is often overshadowed by anger. Years of memories and events have been stolen. While money will not heal the wounds, seeking compensation through a wrongful death lawsuit could bring a small sense of justice, knowing that the responsible party was held accountable. At Rice, Murtha & Psoras, our attorneys and staff are dedicated to providing grieving parents compassionate and professional representation. Below, our Maryland wrongful death attorney discusses filing a lawsuit if you have lost a child.

Common Reasons Why Parents File Wrongful Death Lawsuits for Children in Maryland

Wrongful death claims arise from the same accidents and incidents that commonly result in personal injury claims – except in these unfortunate situations, the injuries are fatal. Our Baltimore wrongful death attorney has filed lawsuits for a variety of reasons.

Accidents Involving Automotive Vehicles

Car accidents claim many lives throughout Maryland, many of whom are children. While parents take great care to protect their children, including using car and booster seats or purchasing a car with several safety features, it is impossible to prevent every fatal accident. When your vehicle is hit by a drunk, aggressive, or distracted driver, you and your family could suffer injuries that change your lives forever.
Children often walk through their neighborhood or to school. Some are by the street when they are playing outside their home. Parents will teach their children how to cross a street or to stay on the sidewalk. However, accidents still occur and sometimes, a child is difficult to see. This is especially the case if a driver is distracted or speeding. Unfortunately, when a child is struck by a car, the injuries are often catastrophic.
In addition to walking and playing, children enjoy the thrill of riding a bicycle. Unfortunately, a child on a bike is liable to be hit by a reckless or careless driver. Even if your child is wearing a helmet and other protective gear, colliding with a car could result in fatal injuries.

Daycare, School, and Sports-Related Accidents

Much of a child’s day is spent in school or at daycare. While at either place, your child is in the care and supervision of other adults. You put your trust in their teachers and other employees to keep your child safe from harm. When their caregivers are negligent or inattentive, accidents could occur. Depending on the seriousness of the accident, your child could suffer fatal injuries. Sometimes, the injuries are a direct result of unsafe conditions on the property. In these cases, our Frederick wrongful death lawyer could hold the building owner or manager responsible for the harm your child endured.
As children grow, they often engage in sports or other athletic pursuits. Once again, parents put their trust and faith in the athletic organization and coaches. When improper or defective equipment is used, serious injuries could occur. Additionally, coaches sometimes push young athletes beyond their physical capabilities and endurance. When this happens, a child is liable to sustain a severe or deadly injury.

Medical Malpractice and Birth Injuries

Medical malpractice often results in deadly complications. When a medical professional makes an unjustified error, including surgical mistakes, misdiagnoses, or medication errors, the results could be fatal. Birth can be a dangerous process for an infant. When a physician or other medical personnel makes a critical error during the delivery, an infant could suffer life-ending complications. Under Maryland law, parents of a fetus who suffered a wrongful death are entitled to file a lawsuit if the fetus would have been viable outside the womb. If you lost your child due to a preventable birth injury, contact our Maryland wrongful death lawyer.

Exceptions to Maryland Parents Filing Wrongful Death Lawsuits for Their Children

In most cases, parents are permitted to file a wrongful death claim if they lose their child. However, there are some exceptions. Under Maryland’s wrongful death statute, the child of a single mother is considered her child unless the father, before the death of the child, was judicially determined to be the father, acknowledged in writing that he was the father, acted in the role of a father, or was subsequently married to the mother.
Additionally, a parent is prohibited from filing a wrongful death claim if the parent has been convicted of child sexual abuse or other specified criminal acts. Furthermore, a parent is not permitted to benefit from a wrongful death lawsuit if they caused their child’s death.

Damages Available for the Wrongful Death of a Child in Maryland

As in any other personal injury lawsuit, you are entitled to recover both economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages are your financial losses due to your child’s death, including medical expenses and funeral costs. In certain circumstances, you could be entitled to income that your child would have earned.
Noneconomic damages are more ambiguous and hard to quantify. They include such things as grief, loss of affection, or society. While difficult to calculate, our Gaithersburg wrongful death attorney will work with you to put a justifiable figure on your loss. Unfortunately, noneconomic damages are capped under Maryland law. If your claim arose from a 2020 incident, your noneconomic award is limited to $890,000.

Call Our Maryland Wrongful Death Attorney if You Lost a Child

No amount of money can bring back a lost child. However, holding a negligent party responsible might provide a sense of justice or relief. Furthermore, monetary compensation could help you move forward. the compassionate lawyers and staff at Rice, Murtha & Psoras are dedicated to fighting for the legal rights of grieving parents. Contact our Maryland personal injury lawyers at (410) 694-7291 to schedule a free consultation.