Losing a loved one can have a significant impact on the entire family. Wrongful death lawsuits respond to the tragic, unnecessary death of a loved one caused by the negligent or intentional behavior of an individual or corporation. Such personal injury lawsuits allow family members and loved ones to seek financial compensation for their loss, which can help to alleviate the burden of funeral costs and other incurred expenses. Though it may be difficult to work through your sorrow, it is important to contact a Los Angeles wrongful death attorney if you’ve recently lost a loved one at the hands of someone else. Doing so will ensure you receive the economic support necessary to begin the healing process and secure your financial future.
An individual or corporation that fails to take adequate care within the normal course of action, such that it results in the harm or death of another, may be considered negligent and therefore liable for any resulting damages. Negligence in wrongful death lawsuits can occur in a variety of circumstances, such as careless, distracted or drunk drivers, failure to provide safe workplace conditions or adequate safety protocols, medical malpractice, harmful drug manufacturing and slip and fall accidents, among others.
Similarly, individuals and corporations whose intentional acts led to a wrongful death can be held liable for damages if it is proven that their actions intentionally caused harm to another.
You should consider speaking with a Los Angeles wrongful death lawyer if you’re loved on was involved in any of the following types of incidents:
Wrongful death claims are typically filed by a representative of the deceased’s estate, on behalf of their survivors. Who qualifies as a ‘survivor’ of the deceased varies from state to state, but in most states, the following family members may bring a wrongful death claim:
However, states often disagree on whether other types of relationships may qualify for wrongful death claims. For example, not all states agree that a parent can file a wrongful death claim on behalf of an adult child, or that an adult child may file a wrongful death claim on behalf of their deceased parent. Siblings and extended relatives, such as grandparents, aunts, uncles or cousins, are also not guaranteed the opportunity to file a wrongful death claim on behalf of a loved one. Usually, a distant familial relationship will make it more difficult to recover for a wrongful death claim.
Proving that negligence or an intentional act led to a wrongful death typically falls on the plaintiff. The plaintiff must be able to show that a variety of elements contributed to their loved one’s death before any damages can be awarded.
Typically, your Los Angeles wrongful death lawyer must prove the following elements of a wrongful death case:
Duty of Care – In most wrongful death or personal injury claims, a plaintiff must prove that the defendant owed a reasonable duty of care to the injured party. For example, drivers are held to a duty of care to follow local laws and safety guidelines. Corporations are held to a duty of care to keep the workplace free from dangerous hazards.
Breach of Duty of Care – Once a plaintiff has established that the defendant owed a duty of care, the plaintiff will be required to prove that their duty of care was breached. For example, a motorist who failed to stop at a red light would be found to have breached their duty of care. The plaintiff will need to present substantial proof that a duty of care was breached.
Causation – Unfortunately, proving that a defendant breached their duty of care won’t be enough to recover for a wrongful death claim in many courts. Instead, the plaintiff will need to prove that the defendant’s breach of duty of care caused the resulting accident and wrongful death. The defendant’s particular action - and not a subsequent, resulting incident - must be the direct cause of the accident.
Wrongful death incidents can result in substantial financial losses and significantly impact a victim’s loved ones for years to come. Particularly in instances where the deceased was the primary source of income for a family, a wrongful death incident can be both an emotional and financial burden for those left behind. Unfortunately, most insurance companies work to quickly settle wrongful death claims, and loved ones reeling from the tragic and sudden loss of their family member are rarely in a position to negotiate. These victims are often taken advantage of and they end up settling for far less than they need or deserve after suffering such a horrific loss.
From recovering overwhelming funeral costs to lost future earnings, a wrongful death lawsuit will ensure your continued stability and security. Initiating a wrongful death lawsuit with a proven Los Angeles wrongful death lawyer is a crucial first step. We’ll conduct a thorough investigation and legal analysis, ensuring that there is an accurate, inclusive projection of your total losses.
Some of the costs you can recover under a wrongful death lawsuit include:
If you’ve recently experienced a wrongful death and are suffering the loss of a loved one, you can rely on the experience and guidance of an accomplished Los Angeles wrongful death lawyer. While it may seem like an insurmountable task, securing your financial future will alleviate an immense burden down the road. Our Los Angeles-area attorneys are sensitive to your needs and the inherent difficulty of this time, and we will make sure to guide you through the process. Contact us today for a free consultation. Start the process by calling 310-273-7300 now!