Concord Wrongful Death Lawyer
The unexpected loss of a close relative is a painful experience that may bring an overwhelming amount of grief and devastation. In addition to the mental anguish that may accompany such a loss, surviving family members may also be left with financial hardship in many cases. Negligence and recklessness are often the cause of such tragedies. If you find yourself coping with grief after losing someone you love, it is essential to understand your rights and options for recovery as a survivor under California law. Remember that the insurance company is only focused on protecting its bottom line and not concerned about what your family is going through during this challenging time. That is why you need legal counsel at your side to protect your rights and best interests throughout the process.
Every year, families in or around the Concord area are devastated because of a fatal accident. If the incident was the result of negligence, our wrongful death lawyers can help the survivors by discussing their case with them and providing free, friendly advice. Call today at (925) 428-5220 or (800) 404-5400.
When someone else’s negligent actions claim the life of a family member, an experienced Concord wrongful death attorney at AutoAccident.com will work hard to help families obtain justice and appropriate financial compensation. Our law firm was established in 1982, and we have represented many families in Contra Costa County and throughout California. With our decades of experience inside and outside the courtroom, we know what must be established to obtain the best outcome possible in cases we handle on behalf of surviving family members. When you are ready to discuss your case and learn about your rights as a survivor, contact our legal team to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys.What is Required to Prove Wrongful Death in California?
There are four elements that must be proven to obtain a successful outcome in a wrongful death case, including:
- Duty of Care: The negligent party owed a duty of care to the deceased
- Breach of Duty: The liable party breached their duty of care toward the decedent
- Causation: Evidence must establish that the other party’s negligence was the direct cause of the loss of a family member
- Damages: The fatal incident resulted in significant financial and intangible losses for surviving family members
These elements must be proven to obtain a favorable outcome in a civil case. An experienced wrongful death lawyer in Concord, CA, can meet with a family to discuss their case and go over their options on how to move forward in their situation.What Types of Damages are Recoverable in a Wrongful Death Case?
After a loved one is killed due to the negligent or reckless act of another party or entity, the surviving family members of the decedent may have the right to recovery of economic and non-economic damages. Those who are eligible for financial recovery must meet the criteria that are outlined in the California Code of Civil Procedure Section 377.60. While no amount of money may ever compensate survivors for the pain that they have endured, the relief that may come from at-fault parties being brought to justice and financial security in the future may be crucial to a family in their time of need. Some of the compensatory damages recoverable in these cases may include but are not limited to:
- Costs of funeral and medical expenses
- Loss of future financial support for the family
- Loss of care, love, protection, and companionship
- Lost parental guidance and supervision
- Mental anguish from the sudden loss of a close relative
An independent and thorough investigation is often necessary in wrongful death claims as each case is unique. An experienced Concord wrongful death attorney may consult with professionals in the field such as medical experts, economists, accident reconstruction experts, and other specialists to prepare a strong case to present during insurance negotiations or in civil court, if necessary.Are Punitive Damages Recoverable in a Wrongful Death Matter?
In fatal motor vehicle accident cases, survivors may seek punitive damages from the other driver if there is evidence demonstrative of excessive speeding or driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI). Exemplary damages are reserved for cases involving egregious conduct and are awarded at the discretion of the court. For additional information on punitive damages, see California Civil Code Section 3294.What is the Filing Deadline for a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in California?
California, like other states, has its own time window on when a wrongful death lawsuit must be filed in civil court. This filing deadline is known as the statute of limitations. Per California Code of Civil Procedure Section 335.1, a family generally has two years from the date of the fatal incident to file suit. If the case is not brought forward on time, the family may lose the right to seek compensatory damages through the court system.
There are situations where the statute of limitations may be shortened. When a wrongful death case involves negligence on the part of a government entity, a notice of claim must be brought within six months of the accident date. This is by the California Government Code Section 911.2. Due to the strict filing criteria and deadlines that may apply to these claims, it is essential to promptly retain legal counsel with years of experience handling such cases.Is it Worth Hiring an Attorney for a Wrongful Death Case?
The aftermath of the loss of a loved one is challenging for any family to go through, particularly if it was sudden and occurred because of someone else’s negligence. Surviving family members faced with such situations may experience stress from attempting to get things in order, and holding at-fault parties accountable through a civil case may be the least of their concerns. The truth is that negligent parties and their insurance companies may attempt to take advantage of survivors during their time of loss and grief. That is their way of limiting their financial liability for the incident.
Retaining legal counsel that has decades of experience handling fatality lawsuits can make all the difference in the outcome of the case. That is because a skilled Concord wrongful death lawyer will have the experience, knowledge, and resources necessary to demonstrate the full extent of the loss and damages incurred so that a family member’s death is not subject to marginalization. For information on how to find the best accident attorney to represent your family, watch this video.How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Lawyer?
Many families may be reluctant to retain legal counsel following the loss of a loved one. At AutoAccident.com, there is no need for you and your family to worry about paying our legal team any upfront fees or retainer costs. That is because we handle cases under a contingency fee agreement. This means that there are no attorney’s fees due unless we obtain a successful outcome in your case. When your family turns to our team of wrongful death lawyers in Concord for help, we will do everything in our power to determine all potential options for financial compensation that may be available to you and your loved ones.Call a Wrongful Death Attorney in Concord, CA Today
The loss of a close relative is a tragedy like no other. While coming to terms with the loss and coping with grief, surviving family members may not be able to fathom the time and effort involved in bringing a wrongful death case forward. Fortunately, survivors may depend on an experienced accident attorney to work on obtaining the justice and financial compensation they deserve all while having the time to focus on recovering from their loss.
At our law firm, we have been helping families in Concord and throughout Contra Costa County navigate the wrongful death claims process for over three decades. We have helped families obtain fair compensation in their cases, and we are here to assist you too. Give us a call today to arrange a meeting to receive free, friendly advice from one of our attorneys on your case at (925) 428-5220 or (800) 404-5400. Our legal team is available anytime to answer your questions and explain what we can do for you and your loved ones.
Editor's Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 12.16.21]
Image Credit: Pixabay User “carolynabooth”
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