We can all imagine the devastation caused by the untimely death of a loved one, especially when it could have been avoided. When a loved one’s death was the result of 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 dangerously defective product, distracted or drunk automobile driver, accident at the workplace, physician’s error, unsafe home or business premises or even an intention 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 the loss of a loved one, but it can 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 actions.
If your loved one died as a result of someone else’s negligence, you will need the advice of a trained wrongful death attorney to guide you through your case. A time of mourning can be overwhelming on its own and the details involved in filing a civil action can add to stress and feeling of loss.
Wrongful death lawsuits are filed as a civil action as opposed to a criminal case. The burden of proof in a civil case is much easier to prove than the “beyond a reasonable doubt” requirement in a criminal case. The result of a civil case is to hold the defendant responsible through monetary punishment as opposed to jail time.
A wrongful death attorney can help you determine who should file the lawsuit, but essentially, only the survivors of a deceased person are allowed to bring a lawful death lawsuit. However, not everyone related to the victim is eligible to file a lawsuit. If the deceased is an adult, proper 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 sudden death of a family member can come with many financial burdens attached. When negligence or intentional wrongdoing leads to the death of a person, 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. Non-economic damages might include the loss of parental guidance for children reasonable value of household services the decedent would have provided and the loss of spousal companionship or even suffering and grief experienced by immediate family members. Other damages may also be awarded under special circumstances and your attorney can review your case to determine if you qualify for these.
When filing a wrongful death lawsuit, timing is key. 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 years of the deceased person’s death. Hiring an experienced attorney is better done sooner than later to ensure proper filing of paperwork in a timely manner.
The insurance companies typically have a very seasoned 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 San Bernardino County, California. We’re compassionate, and we’re sensitive to the fact that our clients have suffered an enduring and permanent loss.
At the San Bernardino 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 San Bernardino 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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