Wrongful death; abandonment
Erik Affolter appeals a summary judgment dismissing his wrongful death claim against American Family Mutual Insurance Company. Affolter sought to recover damages for loss of society and companionship stemming from the death of his son, Zackary Cole Lyrek. The circuit court concluded Affolter was not entitled to assert a wrongful death claim because he was estranged from and had abandoned Zackary. The court also determined that, based on the undisputed facts, Affolter could not prove a loss of Zackary’s society and companionship. We disagree on both points. Affolter, as Zackary’s biological father, is entitled to assert a wrongful death claim pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 895.04, regardless of the quality of his relationship with Zackary. Furthermore, disputed issues of material fact preclude summary judgment on the merits of Affolter’s claim. We therefore reverse. This opinion will not be published.
2010AP2428 Affolter, et al. v. American Family Mutual Insurance Company
Dist III, Dunn County, Stewart, J., Per Curiam
Attorneys: For Appellant: Whitley, Jason W., Amery; For Respondent: Silcox, Justin Hollum, Arcadia