Every day the news is full of stories about people being killed due to someone else’s wrongful actions or negligence. What we don’t hear about is the pain that the surviving family members must live with. The devastation and grief after an unexpected death can be immense.
While nothing can ever replace your loved one, California state law provides some assistance for the family of persons killed by the negligent actions of another. As their next of kin, you may have the option of filing a wrongful death claim to receive a monetary award as compensation for the losses caused by the death. You can file a claim even if there is a criminal case because these types of cases are separate. It’s commonplace for a negligent third party to have to pay damages in a civil suit as well as being charged with manslaughter or murder.
Don’t suffer through the unwarranted death of a family member in San Diego County alone. Contact the San Diego wrongful death attorneys at the Disability Help Center today for legal help.
Wrongful Death Case Elements
While the facts of every wrongful death case are unique, each case usually has three things in common:
- Negligence or another wrongful action. Your family member’s death must be caused by a third-party’s negligence or another wrongful act. For example, a company selling a defective product, a doctor negligently treating his patient, or a truck driver operating his vehicle in a negligent or reckless manner.
- This wrongful action must directly lead to the victim’s death.
- The wrongful act must cause you to suffer loss or damages, such as loss of moral support, affection, companionship, society, comfort, or love, loss of future earnings as well as current income, funeral expenses, or medical bills.
Wrongful death laws are complex, so hiring a wrongful death attorney in San Diego is imperative to a successful case. California state laws only give you two years in which to file a claim. The statute of limitations is even shorter (6 months) if you want to file a claim against a government entity, such as a state or county hospital. For this reason, it’s important to contact the San Diego wrongful death lawyers at the Disability Help Center as soon as possible to discuss your case.
Are You Legally Able to Sue?
The California Code of Civil Procedure Section 377.60 governs which persons can bring a wrongful death claim in San Diego County. Usually, the party who files a wrongful death lawsuit is a surviving child, grandchild, or spouse of the deceased. Domestic partners may be allowed to do so too.
If the person had no immediate family members, then family such as grandparents, siblings, and even cousins, uncles, and aunts may be able to open a case. If the deceased is a child who died due to a medical professional’s negligence during delivery or labor, then his or her parents are legally allowed to file a claim with a wrongful death lawyer as well.
Get a Free Consultation
If someone you love was killed by a third-party in an accident caused by negligence or wrongful actions, it’s vital to step up and take control. While you may not immediately think of contacting a lawyer during the aftermath of an unanticipated tragedy, doing so can help you protect your legal rights and collect compensation for losses you incur from the death, including burial and funeral expenses, medical bills, and loss of financial support.
To file a wrongful death claim, speak to a wrongful death attorney in California at the Disability Help Center in San Diego. We have years of experience assisting clients in your situation. Call us today at 1-888-418-8860 or fill out our online form to schedule a free case evaluation