San Diego Wrongful Death Attorneys
Helping Families Seek Maximum Compensation for Losses
Have you lost a loved one in a wrongful death in or around San Diego? Wrongful deaths can occur through any type of negligence, recklessness, or even malicious intent. When they occur, they can cause physical, emotional, and financial losses of magnitude for you and your surviving family. No loss is as devastating as that of losing a loved one forever, made even more profound by that the fact that it was unexpected and should never have happened. Families in this situation are little prepared for the shock followed by anger and grief that will take months or years to process and overcome. In combination with this, you may also face substantial and overwhelming loss of financial resources from the incident and the deceased family member’s income support.
In such a shattering situation, you should seek the help of a personal injury attorney who is experienced in handling California wrongful death claims. At YD Injury Law, our firm is dedicated to providing caring and compassionate legal representation. We realize the depths of loss you may be facing and the need for justice in holding at-fault parties accountable. Because we deal with these matters day in and day out and have concentrated our practice solely on personal injury law, we have developed the legal skills and knowledge necessary to provide proficient and persistent help in navigating the wrongful death claims process.
Wrongful Death Claims in California
Wrongful death claims can stem from any type of accident or incident in which another party acted in a negligent, reckless, or malicious manner. These accidents can include car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, bicycle accidents, bus accidents, injuries sustained through dangerous or defective products, slip and fall accidents, criminal attacks, and other types of accidents. They may involve more than one negligent or at-fault party. Every case is different with its own set of facts and circumstances that must be discovered, documented, and analyzed to determine and assign fault.
In every case, the compensation and its extent will be based on the unique facts of the case as well. These cases can involve huge financial losses based on a variety of factors.
Compensation in a Wrongful Death Case
Wrongful death is covered under California Code of Civil Procedure CCP 377.60. The types of compensation that may be sought and obtained in a wrongful death claim can include:
- The medical expenses incurred by the person who died of the injuries sustained in the accident or incident that led to death. Often the deceased was hospitalized prior to death in an effort to save his or her life. Medical expenses in these cases can be substantial.
- Funeral and burial expenses for which the family was not prepared due to the unpredictable nature of the death.
- Loss of income that the deceased person would have earned throughout life if the person had lived.
- Loss of companionship, affection, moral support, comfort, guidance, care, and service of the family. These types of non-economic losses can be significant.
- Punitive damages meant to punish the offender(s) in an attempt to serve justice for the grieving family.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in California?
One certain family members of the deceased person’s personal representation for his or her estate can file a claim based on a wrongful act or negligence.
Family members who can file include:
- The deceased person’s husband or wife or domestic partner
- The deceased person’s children
- If none of the above exist, anyone who would be considered an heir to the deceased person’s estate due to the deceased person’s having died “intestate,” meaning without a will; this could include parents, siblings, or any dependent of the deceased person.
Also the following can file a wrongful death claim if they were financial dependents of the deceased person:
- “Putative” spouses or children which generally means those biologically related without benefit of marriage or believed to be the spouses or children despite legal proof.
- Stepchildren of the deceased.
- Parents of the deceased,
Discuss your case with a San Diego wrongful death lawyer by contacting us at (619) 566-1381 today.
Why You Need a San Diego Wrongful Death Lawyer
In the event of an accident or incident that leads to a wrongful death, you will likely be dealing with an insurance company. The insurer may offer you a settlement amount relatively quickly after the death of your family member that you may feel you should accept. However, without the benefit of a personal injury lawyer’s knowledge in this matter, you will not understand whether this offer is one that is in line with what you have ultimately lost. Our firm can independently determine compensation that is fair and just under the circumstances and negotiate further in pursuit of it.
It is important to know that insurance companies commonly make settlement offers that are well below what you deserve. Their main priority is to maintain their financial abundance over your needs. You need an advocate who understands the ploys and methods that insurers use to reduce their payouts and who can fight back with an approach that matches their aggressiveness. At YD Injury Law, our legal team works tirelessly and passionately to help you obtain the justice you deserve after the unnecessary loss of your loved one.
How Do You Prove a Wrongful Death Claim?
In order to prove a wrongful death claim and be awarded resulting damages by the court, it is necessary to prove that your deceased family member was the victim of negligence or wrongdoing. This means that the other party owed him or her a reasonable duty of care. That duty of care was not provided which then led to the accident which result in the death.
For example, if a drunk driver crashed into your family member’s vehicle, he or she could be held responsible for the death and thus liable for your losses and damages. If a manufacturer provided a defective product to the public that your family member used as instructed which then led to his or her injuries and consequence death, the manufacturer may be held accountable.
Statute of Limitations for Wrongful Death Claims
Statute of limitations refers to how long you have to file a wrongful death claim. In California, you have two years from the date that your family member died to file this claim. Failure to file within this timeframe will mean that you forfeit your right to file and pursue compensation.
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