When you must cope with the loss of a loved one, it certainly can be one of the direst experiences you, and your family can have. It may be even worse when the death of your loved one was the result of someone’s, or some institutions, negligent actions, or wrongdoings.
Most wrongful deaths occur from falls, car accidents, unintentional poisonings, work accidents due to unsafe conditions, and more. It also holds that if this death was unintentional, then it was most likely preventable. It’s this preventable contingency of the incident that your wrongful death lawyer will use to convince a judge or jury the party’s death was legally wrongful.
Your lawyer is aware that many legal rules and regulations participate in wrongful death cases, and one of the most important ones involves the “Statute of Limitations.”
The “statute of limitations” is a common court rule that requires all lawsuits to be filed within a certain specified time. If your case is not filed by this specific deadline, then it cannot be brought to the court and usually will be immediately dismissed.
California’s statute of limitations involving a wrongful death lawsuit is two years from the date of your loved one’s passing. However, there are certain exceptions to this statute of limitations; one important one is known as the “discovery rule.”
Cases that contain facts that were not first apparent when your loved one died, but are later discovered, might extend the “statute of limitations” and the time you must file a wrongful death lawsuit.
If the discovery rule applies to your case, then commonly the statute of limitations will be two years from the date on which the cause of death was ascertained. There are other exceptions to this rule as well, and your experienced and knowledgeable Rosemead wrongful death lawyer will fully explain them to you and help you to understand your specific situation.
If your wrongful death case is involving a public entity or an institution, then you commonly only have six months to file a case against that entity. What usually occurs with these wrongful death cases, is the public entity will deny the claim within 45 days, which may give you another six months to file your lawsuit.
In a case where a minor is filing for the death of a parent, then some other special rules apply. If a minor is suing for the death of a parent, then the minor commonly has two years from the day they turn 18 years old. Consequently, if the case is brought due to medical malpractice, there are special rules involved regardless of whether it’s a wrongful death or personal injury lawsuit.
Keep in mind that these cases are legally complex, and the only way to obtain the professional, knowledge-specific information you need is to consult with an experienced Rosemead wrongful death lawyer.
How does California Legally Define “Wrongful Death”
In Rosemead and all of California, a wrongful death claim may be made when one person dies because of the legal fault of another person, entities, or corporate negligence.
Examples of such causes are:
- Negligence-based incidents such as car accidents.
- Medical malpractice, or negligence.
- Intentional acts, which could include crimes and acts of violence.
In a wrongful death case, and all personal injury lawsuits, the defendant’s liability is expressed solely in terms of financial compensation or “damages.” If your wrongful death case is successful, then the Rosemead court orders the defendant to pay, you or the survivors, compensation based on a range of factors. However, there is one significant difference between a wrongful death lawsuit and a criminal homicide case, and that is if the defendant loses a criminal case they could be penalized with jail or prison time, probation, and other sanctions.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Rosemead?
According to Rosemead and California’s wrongful death laws, the following survivors could file a wrongful death lawsuit in Rosemead’s civil courts:
- The deceased’s spouse or domestic partner.
- The deceased’s children.
- Any grandchildren of any deceased child of the decedent.
Also, if no surviving person in the deceased person’s line of descent exists, then a wrongful death lawsuit may be brought by anyone who could claim to be entitled to the property of the decedent by intestate succession. This could include the deceased person’s parents, or siblings, depending on who remains alive at the time of the deceased persons’ death.
In addition to the above-identified individuals, the following people can also bring a wrongful death lawsuit in California. Commonly, they would have to prove that they were financially dependent on the deceased:
- The decedent’s “putative spouse”.
- Any children of the decedent’s putative spouse.
- Stepchildren of the deceased.
- Parents, and legal guardians of the deceased.
Once again, these cases can become exceptionally complex, and the help of a qualified, skillful, and empathetic Rosemead wrongful death lawyer will be invaluable in getting you, and your family, what you legally deserve.
What Damages Could I Get In a Rosemead Wrongful Death Case?
“Damages” would be your claimed losses in a wrongful death personal injury case. Also, damages in a wrongful death case may fall into two main categories. These can be economic and non-economic, and there are a myriad of ways they could be determined.
Examples of economic damages could include:
o Financial support the decedent would have contributed to the family. This could include any future support reduced to their present-day cash value.
o Any loss of benefits that you would have expected to receive from the decedent
o Funeral and burial expenses.
o A reasonable dollar value of household services that the decedent would have provided you.
Non-economic damages could be defined as:
o Loss of the loved one’s love, companionship, comfort, care, assistance, protection, and affection.
o Your loss of the enjoyment of intimacy with the decedent, especially if they were your spouse.
o Loss of your loved one’s guidance in your life, and more.
Calculation of both economic, and especially non-economic compensation is another area in which the experience of your lawyer will be indispensable to you and your future.
I Need To File a Wrongful Death Claim in Rosemead, What Should I Do First?
In any wrongful death situation, there are dozens of emotional, disturbing, and difficult things to deal with, and the stress on you, and the surviving family can be enormous. The compassionate and empathetic wrongful death lawyers at the Law Office of Daniel Deng have vast experience in filing wrongful death lawsuits, so you can receive the damages from those responsible for your loss. Consult with them first and let them help you transition through this challenging time and move forward.