Under CCP 377.34, in a survival action brought by a decedent’s executor or successor in interest, the recoverable damages are those that the decedent suffered before death but do not include pain and suffering or disfigurement damages. Lost wages, medical expenses, and any other pecuniary losses incurred before death are recoverable in such an action. Here, the trial court erred in failing to award the plaintiff the value of home health care and other household services provided to decedent before his death by several of his children. The defendant is liable for the amount for which reasonably competent nursing and attendance by others could have been obtained even if those services are provided by family members for free. The defendant is also liable for the value of nursing services that the decedent would have rendered to his wife had he not been injured by the defendant. However, the defendant is not liable for the value of services decedent would have provided to his wife, had he survived, because those claims do not represent loss or damage that the decedent sustained or incurred before death.
California Court of Appeal, First District, Division 4 (Schulman, J.); August 23, 2018; 26 Cal. App. 5th 672