The Difference Between Cases Involving A Wrongful Death And Negligence.

Any death that’s a result of negligence is sometimes called wrongful death.

This is more of an American term, because wrongful death results in damages being awarded differently than in other negligence cases. Most negligence cases deal with somebody who is hurt and seeks damages for their own injuries. In a wrongful death case, the damages are awarded to the people around the person who died, and in Canada it’s a little more restrictive than in the United States, where wrongful death can result in very substantial claims for the loss of future earnings and a number of other things.

Wrongful death in Canada really depends on whether or not the person died as a result of negligence of any type and that the negligence led directly to the death. The claims are made by the people around the person who died. For the most part these claims are made by spouses, children or parents. If somebody is unattached, their parents have died, they are not married, they don’t have children and they die as a result of negligence, in Canada there is no one left to make a claim. The trustee act in Canada does not allow for a claim by an estate or some distant relative, such as a cousin, as a result of someone’s death due to negligence.

In order to calculate what the damages are for the spouse and the children of the deceased, we have to look at the specific arrangement that went on in that particular marriage and in that particular family. So, wrongful death is an interesting area because it’s a prescribed damage claim, but just for the immediate family members.


If you, or someone you care about, is dealing with Personal injury law issues in the Toronto, Ontario Region, contact Strype Barristers LLP.

This article is taken from a November 22, 2007 interview with Jeff Strype LL.B., Personal Injury Lawyer with Strype Barristers LLP in Toronto , a Personal Injury Law Firm.

Note that laws vary from province to province. Please consult with a lawyer in your own area to be sure of the laws and specific issues in your own jurisdiction.