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Orange County Wrongful Death Attorney

When tragedy strikes, resulting in the untimely death of a loved one, it is understandably devastating to the entire family, especially when the death could have been avoided. If your family member’s death was caused by negligence or intentional wrong doing, The Law Offices of Brent A. Duque can help you through the process of collecting damages from the responsible party. Whether the death resulted from a distracted or drunk driver, construction accident, physician error, dangerously defective product, unsafe home or business premises or even an intentional act, California law allows spouses, children, parents and sometimes other relatives to seek legal action.

We all know that no amount of money can ever replace your loved one, but it can help to ease the financial burden after a loss and will allow the family to feel more at peace when the responsible person is held accountable for their negligent actions.

Filing A Wrongful Death Claim in Orange County, CA

If your loved one died in any type of accident or as a result of another person’s negligence, including (but not limited to) work-related accident, medical malpractice, drunk driving accident, robberies or other criminal activity, you will need the advice of a highly trained wrongful death attorney to guide you through your case. A time of mourning can be confusing and devastating on its own and the intricate details involved in filing a civil action can add to the stress and feeling of loss.

Since any wrongful death lawsuit is filed as a civil action as opposed to a criminal case, the burden of proof for people claiming a wrongful death is less strict, requiring only a preponderance of the evidence as opposed to beyond a reasonable doubt in a criminal case. Simply put, a preponderance of evidence means that the claim is more likely true than not true. If found guilty in a civil case, the defendant in the case will be held responsible through monetary punishment as opposed to prison or jail time.

People Who Can Bring The Case

Only certain survivors of the deceased are allowed to bring a lawful death lawsuit, but not everyone related to the victim is eligible to file a lawsuit. If the deceased is an adult, qualifying parties are restricted to a surviving spouse or domestic partner. If there is no surviving spouse, the lawsuit can be filed by the surviving children or other dependents, including step-children. If the deceased is a child, the lawsuit can be brought by the surviving parents or grandparents (if the parents did not survive the child). Special circumstances may allow for other relatives or beneficiaries to file the lawsuit. A wrongful death attorney can help you determine who should file.


A life cut short typically comes with many financial burdens attached. When negligence or intentional wrongdoing leads to a death, certain heirs can recover damages that have or will occur as a result of the untimely death. These damages are separate from the decedent’s estate and come in the form of economic and non-economic payments.

Economic damages might include loss of financial support to be received during the decedent’s lifetime along with funeral and burial expenses. These are monetary damages that have a specific amount attached. Non-economic damages might include the reasonable value of household services the decedent would have provided and the loss of spousal companionship, suffering and grief experienced by immediate family members or even loss of parental guidance for children. Other damages may also be awarded under special circumstances and your lawyer can review your case with you to determine if you qualify for these.

Time Limits

When filing a wrongful death lawsuit, timing is critical, as each action involves a different statute of limitations. The general rule under the wrongful death statute of the California law requires a lawsuit to be filed within two (2) years of the death. Hiring an experienced attorney is recommended sooner than later to ensure proper filing of paperwork within the time frame allowed.

Insurance companies generally have a very seasoned and aggressive team of attorneys on their side of the table. Complex litigation should not be attempted on your own. Duque Law is an experienced, aggressive and successful wrongful death law firm with offices in Orange County, California. We’re compassionate, and we’re sensitive to the fact that our clients have suffered an enduring and permanent loss.

At the Orange County Law Offices of Brent A. Duque, we maintain a staff of a highly professional, knowledgeable, aggressive and successful wrongful death attorneys who represent injured people through our offices that stretch across Southern California. Time limitations apply to any injury claim you might have, so for purposes of investigating a possible case and possibly preserving evidence, it’s best for you to contact us immediately after a wrongful death. Contact the Orange County law office of Brent A. Duque at 877-241-9554 for a free consultation and case evaluation. You can even use our online contact form, and we’ll reply to you quickly.

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