Elverta Wrongful Death Lawyer

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There is no easy way to handle the unexpected death of a beloved family member. The grief that comes with the loss can be devastating under any circumstances, but it is more troubling when the death is preventable.

The loss of a loved one can impact surviving family members in many ways. The grief can be debilitating. Dealing with a loved one's medical, funeral and burial expenses is an unexpected challenge when you are hurting. Anyone who depended financially on a lost family member may find themselves in a distressing financial situation.

Filing a wrongful death claim can allow the surviving family to seek financial compensation from the negligent party. Call our Elverta wrongful death lawyers at (916) 921-6400 for a free consultation if you believe your family is entitled to compensation.

What Is Wrongful Death?

Wrongful death is any death that occurs due to the negligence of another person or entity. A negligent death can come in many forms, such as auto collisions, motorcycle wrecks, sporting accidents, pedestrian crashes, medical malpractice, slip and falls, and even violent crimes. However, not every accidental death will result in a feasible wrongful death lawsuit. These accidents must occur due to someone else's reckless or careless acts.

While courts use "accidental death" for wrongful death claims, intentional acts can also result in these suits. If you're unclear if the loss of your loved one qualifies as a claim for wrongful death, reach out to us to see whether or not you have grounds to seek compensation.

How Does a Wrongful Death Claim Work?

A wrongful death claim is a civil lawsuit that usually works the same way across jurisdictions. According to the California Code of Civil Procedure Section 377.60, only certain family members have the right to bring these claims. Some parties that could file a wrongful death lawsuit include spouses, punitive spouses, children, siblings, and parents.

Once the correct party (plaintiff) is established, the claim involves a complete investigation. It is essential to determine the cause of the wrongful death and the at-fault parties. Once the investigation is thorough, the plaintiff and their lawyer will send a demand letter to the responsible party. This demand seeks compensation in exchange for an agreement not to file a wrongful death lawsuit.

If the wrongful death case does not settle at this point, it will result in legal action in court. A wrongful death lawsuit can take months or even years before a jury trial can take place.

Damages Recoverable in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

The damages in a wrongful death case generally fall into two categories.

  • The first type of compensation involves compensation for any medical expenses and pain and suffering related to the decedent's injury.
  • The second type of compensation involves the losses family members might experience due to the decedent's untimely death. These claims can provide financial support for those who relied financially on the decedent. Surviving family members could also seek compensation for loss of emotional support or even for the decedent's household chores.
Average Settlement for Wrongful Death Lawsuits

Because no two cases are alike, it is impossible to predict the average settlement for a wrongful death lawsuit. However, using evidence for a claim's value could help determine the settlement amount. Your injury lawyer can help evaluate your claim and give you an estimate on the amount of compensation you might expect.

Various factors go into determining the value of a wrongful death claim. Understanding these factors can be helpful during the evaluation process. These factors include:

  • The age of the decedent
  • The decedent's future earning potential
  • The medical bills related to the injury or death
  • The insurance policy limits

Wrongful death cases can be worth a substantial amount because these claims are intended to provide compensation for the remaining lifetime of the person's earnings. Depending on the factors listed above, the settlement amounts can range from tens of thousands of dollars to several million dollars.

Statute of Limitations on a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

According to California laws, there are three limitations deadlines to file a wrongful death claim in California.

  • In most situations, a wrongful death lawsuit must be filed within two years of injury or death.
  • In medical malpractice or health care provider negligence, the lawsuit must be filed three years from the date of death or one year from when the injury was first discovered.
  • If death involves any government entity, the claim must be filed within six months of the injury.

The statute of limitations exists to avoid delays between an individual's death and filing a wrongful death lawsuit. It is more difficult to adequately prepare for the case if the suit is delayed. For more information about filing deadlines, it is best to speak to a wrongful death lawyer as soon as reasonably possible after you lose a loved one.

Watch the YouTube video below to learn more about wrongful death claims.

Call Our Wrongful Death Lawyers in Elverta, CA Today

If you have lost a family member in a tragic accident in Sacramento County, call our Elverta wrongful death lawyers for free, friendly, and compassionate advice. We can be reached at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400. You can also contact us through our online form.

Our personal injury law firm has been helping clients with wrongful death cases in Sacramento County and throughout Northern California for nearly 40 years.

We are members of the National Association of Distinguished Counsel and the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.

See our client reviews on GoogleYelp, and Avvo and our past verdicts and settlements.

Photo by GoranH on Pixabay

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Client Reviews
"Me and my wife; had a car accident. We were amazed how easy, professional, friendly attorney Ed Smith is along with his staff. Everybody is amazing. Thank you so much, we are very impressed!" Alex & Dinah M.
"Ed Smith and his office team took on a difficult personal injury case on my behalf and for the passenger in my car. Ed is a top- notch attorney. His staff couldn't have been more helpful and kind. No need to look elsewhere. I give Ed Smith my highest recommendation." Beverly
"Ed and Robert have been taking great care of my husband and I for the past 5+ years. They are always there when you have a problem and a quick resolution! Even when the issues have nothing to do with them. They are willing to help ease the pain off your shoulders. They are as good as it gets! Thank you again for everything." Annie T.
"Very professional. Great team, staff and service all around. Mr Smith was very honest, straight forward with his advice. He gives the word "attorney" an honest reputation. I will seek his council anytime, and would recommend him at the drop of a dime." Jeremy M.
"I would highly recommend Ed Smith to any friends or family in need of a personal injury attorney. Ed, and his staff, are very caring on top of being very experienced in this field. The staff always keeps you informed of the status of your case and they are always easy to reach by phone." Shannon D.
"Edward Smith law offices provide competent, thorough, and personable help for victims of personal injury. When you first meet the staff you know you contacted the right office. This law office treats clients like people. I recommend this office to anyone seeking representation regarding personal injury." David M.