What Is Considered a Wrongful Death?
A wrongful death is one that occurs because of someone’s intentional, reckless, or negligent act. For example, if a person suffers fatal injuries in a car crash that resulted from someone else’s reckless driving or intoxication, the deceased individual’s family members may be entitled to file a wrongful death claim for monetary compensation.
If you lost someone in an accident or other occurrence that someone else caused, you have legal options available to you. A knowledgeable and compassionate California wrongful death lawyer in your area can help you file a wrongful death claim – and pursue monetary compensation from the at-fault person’s insurance company. If the insurance company is unwilling to compensate you appropriately, your Orange County wrongful death lawyer can file a lawsuit and litigate your case to a favorable conclusion.
Filing a Wrongful Death Claim or Lawsuit
If you lost a loved one because of someone else’s wrongful act, you might be eligible to pursue a wrongful death claim for damages. Under most circumstances, these claims are filed with the at-fault individual or entity’s insurance company.
First, you will need to set up an estate for your deceased loved one and name a personal representative (PR). The PR then files the insurance claim.
Once the insurance company reviews all of the submitted documentation, including medical records, bills, and lost wage records, the adjuster handling the claim may then make an offer to settle. Your lawyer can negotiate with the adjuster in hopes of convincing them to increase their offer. If the insurance company refuses to offer reasonable compensation, your lawyer can file a lawsuit in the court system – on behalf of the estate – and, if necessary, take the case to a jury trial. Your lawyer can also help you decide whether you should accept a pending settlement offer from the insurance company or file a lawsuit and take your case to trial.
Potential Wrongful Death Damages
To recover damages as part of a wrongful death claim, the claimant will need to demonstrate that the at-fault person’s wrongful act caused the subject accident, which in turn caused the accident victim’s untimely death.
The wrongful death damages that a claimant can recover will vary from case to case. However, some of the most common types of damages include:
- Compensation for funeral and burial costs
- Compensation for loss of the deceased individual’s future income
- Compensation for loss of the decedent’s comfort, care, and companionship going forward
Your lawyer can help you maximize the damages that you recover from your wrongful death claim or lawsuit and zealously advocate for your legal interests.
Call an Experienced and Compassionate California Wrongful Death Attorney Today
If you lost a loved one in an accident that resulted from another person’s wrongdoing, you have legal options. One of the first steps you should take after the accident is to consult with a knowledgeable California wrongful death lawyer in your area. Your lawyer can investigate the circumstances of the accident and, if necessary, retain an accident reconstructionist, to help you prove the legal elements of your wrongful death claim.
Your lawyer will zealously negotiate for you during negotiations with the insurance company and encourage them to increase their settlement offer appropriately. Finally, if the case must go to trial, your lawyer can represent the estate at all legal proceedings and pursue the best possible verdict in the case.