Santa Ana Wrongful Death Attorney
We never want to think that a loved one could meet with an untimely death, especially one that could have been avoided, but from time to time, this tragedy befalls a family. Whether your loved one’s death was the result of negligence or intentional wrong doing, The Law Offices of Brent A. Duque can help ease you through the process of collecting damages from the responsible party. Whether the death resulted from a negligent driver, workplace/construction accident, doctor’s 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 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.
Filing A Wrongful Death Claim in Santa Ana, CA
When you file a wrongful death claim, you are asserting that the defendant has caused someone’s death either negligently or through intentional harm. Since any wrongful death lawsuit would be filed as a civil action as opposed to a criminal case, the burden of proof for people claiming a wrongful death is a preponderance of the evidence as opposed to beyond a reasonable doubt in a criminal case. A preponderance of evidence means that the claim is more likely true than not true. It isn’t as strenuous of a burden of proof as in a criminal case. If found guilty in a civil case, the defendant in the case will be held responsible through monetary punishment as opposed to jail time.
People Who Can Bring The Case
In California, only the survivors of a deceased person 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, 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 wrongful death attorney can help you determine who should file the lawsuit.
When a life is unexpectedly cut short, many financial burdens can come along with it. 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 may 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 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 attorney can review your case to determine if you qualify for these.
When filing a wrongful death lawsuit, you must adhere to the strict timeline set for each action as they all involve 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 Santa Ana, California. We’re compassionate, and we’re sensitive to the fact that our clients have suffered an enduring and permanent loss.
At the Santa Ana 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 our Orange County Personal Injury Attorney at 1-877-241-9554 to learn more about your legal options. A free consultation is just a phone call away. You can even use our online contact form, and we’ll reply to you quickly.