Wrongful death settlements are awards which are given to surviving family members when someone is killed due to the actions of another. When a lawsuit is brought forth against another individual charging them with wrongful death, it may or may not be brought before a jury. Sometimes the settlement is made between the lawyers and the offended person never sees a courtroom.
It is possible for you to be awarded a settlement in a wrongful death ruling, and never see a dime from it. This is because a lot of times the amount of money awarded is far above what the individual is worth financially. A case which has a large sum awarded may actually exceed the value of all of the physical property the sued individual owns, including the amount of money they have in the bank.
In any event, when the settlement award is greater than the financial net worth of the person being sued, there is little to nothing which can be done about collecting the award. Sometimes the judge will order monthly payments made to the surviving family, but they are usually an amount which the person can reasonably afford.
This does little for the surviving family, and if the person being sued has to sell everything they have, they can be financially ruined to the point they cannot make payments. Left with this predicament, it becomes a thorn in the side of the surviving family.
Wrongful death settlements are a sad business for everyone involved. The surviving family will always have the pain of losing their loved one, and the offending individual will have the memory of what their actions have wrought. The situation can leave both the plaintiff and the defendant in a financial and emotional turmoil. The family who lost a loved feels there has been no justice, and the defendant feels they have lost everything.