Tennessee Wrongful Death Laws

In Tennessee, where a person’s death is caused by the wrongful act, fault or omission of another and suit is brought for damages, as provided for by §§ 20-5-106 and 20-5-107, the party suing shall, if entitled to damages, have the right to recover for the mental and physical suffering, loss of time and necessary expenses resulting to the deceased from the personal injuries and also the damages resulting to the parties for whose use and benefit the right of action survives death resulting from the injuries received[i].

Where a wrongful death action has been instituted by any person other than an executor, executrix, administrator, or administratrix of a decedent’s estate, the estate may be made a party defendant to any civil action arising out of the same facts, happenings, or circumstances otherwise properly brought by serving process on the person instituting the original wrongful death action[ii].

After a decedent’s estate is made a party defendant as provided, if an executor, executrix, administrator or administratrix of the decedent’s estate is appointed, the person who instituted the original wrongful death action shall notify the executor, executrix, administrator or administratrix of the decedent’s estate in writing of all actions heretofore instituted against the decedent’s estate. The failure of the person to notify the executor, executrix, administrator or administratrix of the decedent’s estate, as provided, may render the person liable for all resulting damages.  Any individual served with process under this section shall notify any person or entity charged with the responsibility of defending the action to which the subject estate has been made a defendant.  The notice shall be in writing[iii].

[i] Tenn. Code Ann. § 20-5-113

[ii] Tenn. Code Ann. § 20-2-112

[iii] Id.


Inside Tennessee Wrongful Death Laws