Loss of Consortium is a damages claim, where a family member has lost companionship with the injured party. Damages can be recovered for both past and future losses, but the injured person must have received an actual physical injury. Mental anguish is insufficient for a Loss of Consortium claim.
Typical forms of loss of consortium in Texas include:
The loss of emotional and/or intangible elements in a marriage, including “affection, solace, comfort, companionship, society, assistance, and sexual relations necessary to a successful marriage.” Holcombe v. United States, No. SA-18-CV-00555-XR, 8 (W.D. Tex. Feb. 7, 2022)
A claim brought by the child of an injured or deceased parent. The claim should take under consideration “the severity of the injury to the parent and its actual effect upon the parent-child relationship, the child’s age, the nature of the child’s relationship with the parent, the child’s emotional and physical characteristics, and whether other consortium giving relationships are available to the child.” ” Reagan v. Vaughn, 804 S.W.2d 463, 483 (Tex. 1991)
A claim brought by the parent of a child who was killed by the defendant’s action. No recovery can be made if the child survives, no matter how severe the injuries might be. Roberts v. Williamson, 111 S.W.3d 113, 120 (Tex. 2003)
No Loss of Consortium claims can be made between siblings and step-parent/-child relationships. If a step-parent has formally adopted a previous step-child, the outcome may be different.
An award for loss of consortium can be reduced by contributory negligence. In other words, if the injured party was partially at fault, the award would be reduced by the percentage of the injured party’s contribution.
A defendant can introduce evidence of marital discord as a defense against loss of spousal consortium.