The Los Angeles wrongful death lawyers at our firm cannot reunite you with your loved one, but they can protect your interests and help you receive financial compensation for your loss.
Wrongful death occurs when someone dies because of the negligence or recklessness of another party— whether an individual, a corporation, or a government agency. While the bulk of wrongful death cases are due to motor vehicle accidents— there are many other causes, and they include:
Some wrongful death cases result from criminal activity, such as manslaughter or drunk driving. However, a wrongful death lawsuit is a civil matter, and any arrests, charges, and sentencing belong to the criminal justice system. The family may file a wrongful death lawsuit, even if a criminal case is ongoing.
Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Under California law, certain family members have priority in the filing of a wrongful death lawsuit. The priority order consists of a surviving spouse, domestic partner, or children. Only when the decedent did not have these surviving family members may other relatives, including parents or siblings, file this action.
Under the state’s statute of limitations, the family must file a lawsuit within two years. Failure to file within this timeframe means it cannot go forward. While two years sound like sufficient time, in reality, it is critical to hire legal counsel as soon as possible after the loved one’s demise. When it comes to collecting evidence and documenting the circumstances surrounding your family member’s death, time is of the essence when starting an investigation.
Wrongful Death Compensation
Just as every person is unique, so is every wrongful death lawsuit. Compensation or damages depends on various factors, including the victim’s age, occupation, education, future prospects, and the many details making up the facets of a life. These may include economic losses such as:
- Funeral and burial costs
- Medical expenses for the last injury or illness
- Lost income
- Lost potential income
Non-economic damages may include:
- Loss of household services
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of guidance
California does not place a cap on the awarding of wrongful death damages.
Contact our Salamati team of Santa Monica Wrongful Death Lawyers
The worst has already happened, but a compassionate personal injury attorney at our firm can help you receive justice for your loved one and hold those responsible for their death accountable. Schedule a free consultation by calling or texting 24/7 or contacting us online. We will evaluate your case and advise you of your options. Because we work on a contingency basis, there is never a fee unless we win.