There are instances wherein a civil wrong is committed out of negligence or deliberate action. However, such wrong is not within the context of a contract or legally binding agreement. These instances of civil wrong are referred to as a tort. Tort law defines what can legally constitute as a tort injury given the circumstances of the civil wrong committed. When a court of law rules in favor of a plaintiff seeking damages from a case of tort, a special kind of tort recovery may be awarded to a family member of the tort victim. This refers to loss of consortium.
A loss of consortium usually occurs in cases involving death or severe disability or incapacitation due to negligence. Tort does not necessarily involved illegal offenses wherein an injury may occur. Tort encompasses events wherein harm has been experienced by an individual. The individual may file a lawsuit against the party who can be held liable for the injuries suffered by the individual. Upon filing the lawsuit, the individual may seek damages or some form of restitution in order to be compensated for the harm he or she has suffered due to the tort.
It is common that in cases of tort litigation for the person who has been actually harmed to receive the damages awarded by the court of law. However, the premise of a loss of consortium is that the family members of the victim have also suffered and should be compensated. This is because the family members have suffered the loss of a family member, the victim of the tort.