The Basics of Wrongful Death Claims in California

The Basics of Wrongful Death Claims in California

It’s the most traumatic and distressing thing you could ever deal with—the death of a family member. There’s nothing that can truly make what happened okay, but you may be considering filing a wrongful death claim anyway. Will this even the scales of justice or set the world back on its axis? Probably not, but it could help you to move on with your life.

Filing a wrongful death claim with help from an Orange County Personal Injury Lawyer could benefit you and your family in a number of ways. First, it could result in you and your family getting the justice and closure you need after a family member’s death. It could make you feel just a tiny bit better, because you held the negligent person who caused the death to account.

Your claim could also result in financial compensation for you and your family, which you could put to good use. 

You could use the money to pay for your family member’s funeral and burial expenses, honoring their burial wishes. You could use the money to pay off financial debts the family member left behind. You could use some of the money to put toward something your family member cared about. 

Understanding the Basics of the Wrongful Death Claim Process

Whatever your reasons for filing a wrongful death claim are, you will need to know the basics. 

Statute of Limitations

For starters, you should know the time limitation for filing a wrongful death claim in California. You only have two years to file your case. Failure to bring your claim or lawsuit within the designed time frame will result in a dismissal of your case.

Who Can File a Fatal Accident Claim in California?

You should also know that only close family members of the deceased person are permitted to file a fatal accident claim in California. Close family usually includes the spouse of the deceased, children, parents, siblings, and other next of kin. It does not include brothers from another mother or the friend who was loved like a sister.

The Law of Negligence

When filing your claim, you will need to be able to prove negligence. Negligence is a legal term meaning careless or dangerous behavior that resulted in another person’s death or injury. When negligence is proved, the person responsible can be made to pay damages.

Types of Benefits You Can Receive

The family of the deceased person can receive financial benefits if they win their case. You could receive financial compensation for all of the economic losses the family suffered, such as medical expenses, lost income, loss of the value of household services, and cost of a funeral and burial.

You could also receive compensation meant to account for the non-economic damages the family has suffered. For instance, you can receive funds meant to account for your pain, mental trauma, grief, loss of consortium, and lost life happiness.

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