Wrongful death statutes differ from state-to-state. You must understand the requirements of your state’s wrongful death statute if you want to file a wrongful death case. Failure to comply with these standards can result in the court dismissing the lawsuit. Read on to discover an overview of wrongful death claims in Maryland to help you understand them better.


Wrongful death is a legal phrase that describes a circumstance in which a person dies because of the negligence or misbehavior of another party. Wrongful death claims are primarily civil lawsuits filed by the decendants surviving family members to recover financial damages for their losses.

Accidents involving motor vehicles, hazardous roads, product liability, and medical negligence are common sources of wrongful death lawsuits.

Statute of Limitations in Maryland

The Maryland wrongful death statute of limitations is three years from the descendant’s date of negligence. This stipulation implies that the court will likely dismiss any claim brought after the lapse of the three years. There are occasionally exceptions to the rule, though.

In these cases, the plaintiff must file the lawsuit within either ten years of the death date or three years after a physician identified the occupational disease as the cause of the person’s death. (whichever comes first) One such exception applies in cases involving toxic exposure.

This exception allows more time to file a claim in circumstances where the cause of death was not immediately known. Remember that Maryland has a rigorous statute of limitations for wrongful death cases, and the court will often refuse to issue extensions or waivers. Therefore, you must submit a claim as soon as possible to guarantee that the court considers it.


In Maryland, the decedent’s lawful heirs, such as a spouse, parent, or child, can bring a wrongful death lawsuit to court. If none of the aforementioned situations apply, then any individual who was materially reliant on the deceased and had any connection to them by blood or marriage may bring a wrongful death claim. To be eligible, the claimant must establish their dependence on the dead for emotional and financial support.


The plaintiff in a wrongful death lawsuit in Maryland must demonstrate that the individual passed away. You can prove this with the provision of a death certificate, autopsy report, or other documentation that proves the death of a person.

Then, a plaintiff needs to show the death resulted from someone else’s negligence. This evidence can include records of a defendant’s breach of a duty of care or other documents that demonstrate a defendant’s negligence. Finally, they need to demonstrate that the descendants passing caused financial harm to the surviving family members.


In a wrongful death case in Maryland, plaintiffs can claim the following damages:

  • Monetary compensation for the potential lost contributions the deceased would have made to the surviving
  • Mental anguish
  • Emotional pain and suffering
  • Loss of companionship, comfort, and protection
  • Loss of parental, marital, or filial care

The above list is not exhaustive.

The amount of damages the court normally grants beneficiaries depends on how much each person lost due to the decedent’s death. The maximum noneconomic damages in Maryland with a single beneficiary in wrongful death cases are $845,000 in 2023.

A wrongful death lawsuit will require significant legal knowledge of the procedures to ensure you receive compensation successfully. Contact us at The Jaklitsch Law Group today for legal assistance with wrongful death claims.