As heirs, the wife and the children of the decedent can collect damages for their grief and sorrow over the loss of the future support/moral support the individual would have provided to them. For instance, if the wife was in her 30’s when her husband died and the husband had a good career and could have made a certain amount of money through the retirement age of 65 or 70, you could project that type of loss of support.
The survivors would claim damages for loss of companionship, society and consortium, and then loss of enjoyment of life.
Then you have damages for the estate. The personal representative on behalf of the estate can sue for the reasonable funeral and burial expenses, and the medical expenses resulting from the deceased person’s injury or illness. Those are costs that the personal representative of the estate can recover.
The estate can also get punitive damages under Nevada’s wrongful death law.
If the estate is able to win punitive damages, would that be distributed to the heirs?
Yes, but medical bills and the debts of the estate are paid first. Once those type of bill are paid the heirs get what assets remain.