Orangevale Wrongful Death Lawyer
The recent loss of a loved one is an emotionally devastating event that may leave you scarred for the rest of your life. This is particularly true when the death may have been caused by the wrongdoing or negligence of another person. The National Safety Council (NSC) estimated that close to forty thousand people were killed in automobile accident crashes in 2016. That represents a six percent increase from 2015, according to Fortune.com. That also represents a staggering fourteen percent jump in car wreck deaths since 2014, according to the NSC data.
If your family has recently lost a loved one, you are, quite understandably, feeling hurt, angry, and confused about the circumstances of your loved one’s death. This is especially true when someone’s life is taken in a preventable accident. It is natural to have questions about the circumstances of a sudden passing and taking legal action can help offer a level of clarity about what exactly happened.How Wrongful Deaths Occur
In addition to fatal automobile accidents, it is possible that a wrongful death may occur under the following circumstances:
- Pedestrian hit by a vehicle while crossing the street
- Boating accident
- Train accident
- Medical error or malpractice
- Unsafe or defective consumer products
- Dangerous prescription medications that cause deadly side effects
Even if the recent death of your loved one did not occur as a result of any of the above-listed circumstances, that does not mean a wrongful death did not occur. If you have unanswered questions about your loved one’s passing, you should contact an Orangevale wrongful death lawyer right away.Financial Strain of Loss
The loss of a family member can result in tremendous financial strain for a family, especially if the decedent was a primary breadwinner. The mortgage, electric bill, water, credit card bills, etc. will keep piling up. They do not stop simply because someone passes away. This is why it is so important to exercise your legal rights and pursue a wrongful death claim against the reckless party that took your loved one’s life.What You Can Pursue in a Wrongful Death Claim
The wrongful death litigation process can result in a variety of different forms of financial compensation. Under California law, compensation-based damages can include the recovery of any medical bills accrued by your loved one prior to their death (e.g., emergency room bills), funeral costs, and the lost future wages of the decedent. The future wages of a decedent may wind up being substantial, especially if your loved one was holding down a full-time job and contributing to the support of your family. Your lawyer can obtain a reasonable estimate of your loved one’s future wages by retaining the services of an experienced economist and introducing W-2s and tax returns from your loved one to substantiate the wage claim.
In addition to the economic harms described above, you can also pursue non-economic harms including damages for the loss of a loved one’s companionship and the pain and suffering you endured as a proximate result of your loved one’s sudden, unexpected death.
In certain cases containing particularly shocking facts, punitive damages may also be available to punish the defendant for their outrageous and shocking conduct. For example, if a driver was heavily intoxicated driving on the highway at a rate of 105 mph and they collide head-on with your loved one’s vehicle, there may be a sufficient basis to pursue punitive damages.
Watch the following video for more on a wrongful death claim.Legal Fee Contingent on Getting a Financial Recovery
Many people mistakenly believe that if they hire an attorney, they are going to have to pay a massive hourly fee or large lump sum as a retainer fee. No true. The overwhelming majority of wrongful death lawyers work on a contingency fee. This means your lawyer does not collect a single dime until a financial recovery is secured. In effect, if you do not get paid, your lawyer does not get paid.Do Not Lose Your Right To Hold the Defendant Accountable
If you believe that you have a viable wrongful death claim, it is important that you contact an Orangevale wrongful death attorney sooner rather than later. California law requires that wrongful death lawsuits be filed within two years from the day of your loved one’s death. If you put off taking action, you are running the risk of losing your legal right to hold the reckless party accountable for their negligence. Sometimes the deadline to file a claim is short if your loved one was killed due to a negligent public agency. In that case, you have six months or 180 days to lodge a claim. After that, there are more strict timelines that must be filed. Therefore, it is important to call an Orangevale wrongful death lawyer promptly after the death of your loved one.
I’m Ed Smith, an Orangevale wrongful death lawyer. If you have lost someone you love in an accident, please call me for compassionate, free and friendly advice. You can call me at 916.921.6400 or 800.404.5400.
I handle cases on a contingency fee basis. You pay no fees upfront. I get paid after the successful outcome of your case.
You can read about personal injury lawyers here.
See some of the results I have obtained for my past clients on my Verdicts and Settlements page.
Photo by ab
:sb bw [cs 935]
Editor’s Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 10.1.19]