Wrongful Death Lawyer in Los Angeles
If an accident has claimed the life of a loved one, you may be able to bring a wrongful death action against the person or persons responsible. Often, an “accident” that results in death could be due to someone’s negligent act. Wrongful death actions can arise under many factual circumstances, and the complexities of such a lawsuit require experienced legal assistance.
If you have lost a family member due to the negligent actions of another, you should contact The Trial Law Offices of Bradley I. Kramer, M.D., Esq., as soon as possible to review the possible case and the services that are available. We understand the pain and difficulties that you and your family are facing and we will aggressively fight to protect your rights.
What is a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
A wrongful death occurs when someone is killed due to the negligent, reckless, or intentional act of another person (or entity). A wrongful death claim is brought by the surviving beneficiaries or dependents of the deceased victim, and must be filed within two years of the victim’s death. The intent is to compensate the victim’s family members who have suffered economically and emotionally from the loss of a loved one.
A wrongful death may result from any number of causes, some of which might include:
- Medical mistakes
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Airplane, train, bus, boat, or other transportation-related accidents
- Criminal attacks
- Defective products
- Food poisoning
- Failure to keep property safe (dangerous conditions on someone’s property)
- Work-related exposure to dangerous conditions or substances
What Must Be Proven To Win The Case?
In order to succeed in a wrongful death lawsuit under California law, the following elements must be established:
- The death must be caused, in whole or in part, by the negligent conduct of the defendant
- There must be a surviving spouse, children, other legal dependents, or affected heirs
- The family of the victim must have suffered harm
- What Kinds of Damages & Settlement Amounts Can Be Recovered?
In a wrongful death lawsuit, a judge or jury will decide the amount of damages based on what is called “pecuniary injury.” This means they will consider how much money the family members of the deceased lost in some of the following areas:
- Loss of future financial support
- Loss of inheritance
- Loss of the victim’s love, companionship, comfort, affection, protection, and moral support
- Loss of consortium (a spouse may sue for loss of the romantic/sexual relationship)
- Loss of the victim’s care and guidance as a parent
- Costs of funeral and burial expenses
- The family of the victim cannot recover damages for their own grief or sorrow. In some cases, wrongful death lawsuit settlement amounts and punitive damages are recoverable if the victim survived the accident, for any amount of time, before death occurred. Punitive damages are also available when the wrongful death resulted from a homicide and the defendant has been convicted of a felony.
California Wrongful Death Attorney
When a loved one is killed by the negligent action of another, the surviving family members can be devastated by feelings of grief, anger, confusion, and uncertainty about the future. In such a traumatic time, it is essential that you contact an experienced wrongful death attorney who can protect your legal rights while you cope with such a tragic loss.
The Trial Law Offices of Bradley I. Kramer, M.D., Esq. will fight to hold the liable parties accountable and help you secure the compensation that you deserve.