Grief and Loss: Identifying and Proving Damages in Wrongful Death Cases

Robert T. Hall & Mila Ruiz Tecala

7 Reviews
Format: Paperback
Condition: New
Sale price$155.00

This book is strongly recommended by leading trial consultant and damages expert, David Ball, as essential for presenting damages in wrongful death cases.

Handling wrongful death cases provides unique challenges for plaintiff lawyers. When a loved one dies, you often have no visible injuries to show. No expert can calculate the cost of maintaining a life in absence of a child, a wife, a parent, or a sibling. Instead, your client's noneconomic damages are invisible, difficult to quantify, and often incomprehensible. How do you communicate those intangible general damages to a mediator, a judge, or a jury?

Grief and Loss: Identifying and Proving Damages in Wrongful Death Cases brings expert knowledge from one of the country's leading trial attorneys specializing in wrongful death cases, Robert T. Hall, and from noted grief therapist Mila Ruiz Tecala. Together, Hall and Tecala teach you about the stages of grief, how the loss of a parent, a child, a spouse, or a sibling differ from each other, and how losing any loved one is a lifelong, life-altering experience. Applying the strategies in this book, you can show jurors that a family who experiences a death has not one loss, but a network of losses. Learn how to convey to the jury and decision makers that a death in the family is the death of that family.

But, you cannot try a wrongful death case correctly using the usual expert witnesses and lay witnesses.  You need to ensure that the correct experts such as psychologists, psychiatrists and grief counselors, see and treat the family members in the time between the loss and ADR or trial.

Your job, as counsel, is to communicate that an untimely death is a damage just as tangible and real as wage loss or medical costs. This book can show you the way to fully develop your evidence and arguments for noneconomic damages in wrongful death claims. Hall and Tecala help you navigate the difficult waters of sorrow—various family members grieve in different ways, on different schedules, and sometimes in conflict with each other. What may seem like irrational or inexplicable behavior to you or your jurors may in fact be a part of mourning that a therapist would expect. With this book as a guide, you can become more understanding of your clients' loss, and more effectively communicate the damages to a mediator, a judge, or a jury.

This book is accompanied by downloadable files that contains the wrongful death laws in all fifty states, sample closing arguments by Hall and other notable trial lawyers, sample direct examinations of wrongful death beneficiaries and a grief counselor, several checklists, legal briefs, and other information on wrongful-death related topics.

If you want to improve your success handling wrongful death claims, and become a leading wrongful death lawyer in your area, study this book and incorporate its ideas at your law firm.

Paperback: 374 pages; 1st edition (2010); ISBN: 978-1934833117
Publisher: Trial Guides, LLC
  1. Preface
  2. Introduction
  3. Dimensions of Grief
  4. The Tasks of Grieving
  5. Complicated Grief
  6. Network Losses
  7. Death of a Spouse
  8. Death of a Parent
  9. Death of a Sibling
  10. Death of a Child
  11. Stigmatized Deaths
  12. Anticipatory Grief
  13. Stereotypes, Myths, and Misconceptions About Grief
  14. Grief Therapists
  15. Bibliography

Also included with book: CD with sample summations, checklists, and law

What Legal Leaders Are Saying

This book gives you the tools you need to understand not simply the stages of grief, but all of the emotions, fears, and feelings and agendas that accompany it. [This book] is an intensely readable journey into the legal and human parts of death, and will illuminate and expand your abilities to help your clients.

— Frank Froman, Ed.D., clinical psychologist and editor of The Independent Practitioner
Max L.
Verified Reviewer
A powerful book for a WD attorney
If you are to be a conduit for your clients to the jury, you need to understand the clients' experience. This book really helps with that.
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Adam L.
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Beautifully written
This is one of those books I keep on my desk. Beautifully written and has fantastic insight on how to explain grief and loss to a jury. Five stars.
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Todd Y.
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Grief Loss Book Review
Practical advise for addressing human suffering while providing a construct to educate others about the nature of the suffering:
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Dan G.
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Bible Verse
Reminds me a quote from the Old Testament about a woman who lost her children. Someone spoke of comfort but "........ does not want comfort". I tried to use the quote in a case 20 yrs. ago. Defense objected to quoting the Bible and I flubbed the response.
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Adrienn T.
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In depth guide to working up your wrongful death case
This book providers a different perspective on how to work up non economic damages in a wrongful death case and it is easy to follow
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