Can you sue someone for accidently killing your partner?

A colleague was kindly driving myself and another employee to a training day, and he was driving like a bleedin idiot. A couple days later I was recounting the story of his driving to Mrs essell who made a comment along the lines of “I’d sooo sue his ass if he got you killed!”

So hypothetical, Someone crashes a car, it’s an accident but down to borderline dangerous driving. I get killed, the driver lives.

Can my partner sue the driver for loss of income if I’m the main earner? Damages? Deprivation of happiness?

Does it have any effect on the scenario that were we technically working at the time?

I said no, but Mrs essell says yes

In the UK one of the types of claims that the insurance companies hate is when a motorcylist kills their pillion passenger - but I’ve been told that the payouts are even worse if the passenger is, say, paraplegic.

At common law, no action could be brought for wrongfully causing the death of a human being. The person responsible for the death could be held criminally, but not civilly, responsible.

Today, every American jurisdiction has some type of statutory remedy for wrongful death. There are two types of wrongful death statutes: “survival” type and “true” type.

Survival type: Some statutes authorize the survival of any action that the decedent himself might have maintained, and enlarge it to include the damages sustained by his estate by reason of his death. Damages recoverable under this type of statute include the decedent’s pain and suffering and medical expenses, together with the loss of future net earnings or savings.

True type: Most jurisdictions have statutes that create a cause of action for the benefit of particular surviving relatives — usually spouse, children, and parents — and permit recovery only of the monetary loss sustained by the relatives.