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What Families of the Deceased Victims Must Know in Wrongful Death?

wrongful death claim

Personal injury accidents such as motor vehicle crashes, incidents of slip and fall or trip and fall inside someone else’s premises, use of defective products, and medical malpractice usually involve negligence. Victims involved in these accidents often accrue minor to serious injuries; however, there are some incidents that result in their deaths. Whether the deaths occurred at the scene itself or while recuperating from their injuries, as long as there is negligence involved, surviving family members of the deceased can bring to court wrongful death claims.

But what basically is wrongful death? It is an event that occurs when someone is killed because of another person or entity’s actions or inaction’s that are actually preventable. For example, motor vehicle accidents happen because of another driver’s recklessness behind the wheel, especially when he or she is speeding. Also, deaths due to the use of defective products are due to the negligence of manufacturers to provide adequate labels warning consumers of various dangers regarding the use of a certain product.

California wrongful death: who can sue?

The family of a victim who died in a wrongful death accident in California  can bring to court a lawsuit that would demand the negligent party to pay the surviving members of the deceased damages. That is, if the lawsuit is a successful one. In order for the family or any surviving members of the deceased to be fully compensated, it is important for them to consult with a lawyer who handles wrongful death cases in California.

The state’s laws on wrongful death cases allow the following individuals to seek a wrongful death lawsuit:

  • Spouse or children of the deceased;
  • Domestic partner of the deceased;
  • Parents or siblings of the deceased;
  • Grandparents of the deceased; and/or
  • Persons who have been dependent on the deceased financially before the latter’s death.

Possible damages for wrongful death cases

According to California wrongful death lawyers, the compensation the families or surviving members of the deceased victims may be able to receive from the liable parties usually cover the following:

  • Expenses for the victim’s funeral and burial;
  • Medical expenses and rehabilitation costs;
  • Lost income;
  • Pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and emotional distress.

California statutes of limitations in filing a wrongful death lawsuit

Families or anyone eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the liable party must be aware of the statute of limitations. These are time limits for taking a legal action. In this situation, the death of an individual in a personal injury accident provides entitles the surviving family members to file a lawsuit within 2 years of the person’s death. Three years from the date of injury is the time limit for family of the person who died due to medical malpractice. If the death was due to the negligence of a government entity, a claim must be filed within 6 months of the person’s demise. Following these will give them the chance to exact justice from the negligent and reckless action of the other party.

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