Wrongful Death Attorneys | Curtis Legal Group
Personal Injury Lawyers

Wrongful Death Lawyers

Wrongful Death

The sudden and unexpected death of a loved one can be especially painful for the entire family. Not being able to say goodbye or be there for your loved one’s last moments can make the grieving process even harder.

You may now have to fight to hold someone responsible for the death of your family member. You do not have to do this alone – the attorneys at Curtis Legal Group are here to help you obtain appropriate compensation after the wrongful death of a family member.

What is a Wrongful Death?

A death in California is considered wrongful if it was caused by someone’s negligence or an intentionally harmful act. In order for a wrongful death case to proceed in California courts, there must be evidence of a negligent or intentional act. It is considered negligence when the person or organization involved carelessly caused an accident that resulted in the death of another or, in some cases, failed to do something that would have prevented a deadly accident from occurring. Scenarios leading to wrongful death can include car accidents, pedestrian accidents, fires, slips and falls, and other fatal accidents that were caused by negligent behavior. Negligence can also be found in medical malpractice cases, production of defective products, and dangerous prolonged exposure to toxic chemicals. An intentionally harmful act happens when a person knowingly hurts another, including murder, arson, and assault. For a wrongful death case to proceed, there must be evidence that shows that either a negligent or an intentional act was the direct cause of death.

Why File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

Your family may be trying to figure out how to survive not only without their loved one, but also without the money their loved one contributed to the bills. In many cases, an accidental death can be attributed to the negligence or intentional act of another person or company, making it a wrongful death. Your loved one was not meant to die at that moment and your family has the right to hold someone accountable for that death and ultimately receive financial compensation.

Filing a wrongful death lawsuit is how you can hold someone financially responsible for the sudden, unexpected death of your loved one. Depending on the cause of death, criminal charges could be filed as well, but those legal proceedings would be independent of the civil wrongful death case. A favorable result in the wrongful death suit will only be related to financial compensation and will not send the guilty party to jail for their actions or negligence and vice versa. Damages awarded to the decedent’s survivors can help pay for things like funeral expenses, medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

For a wrongful death case to be valid, your attorneys must prove the death caused you and your family to suffer a significant loss. This may take many forms, including the loss of love, comfort, care, and society resulting from the death of your loved one. Financial loss is often one of the most commonly used in court because it is the easiest to quantify. If the loved one who died provided income to the household, losing that income can be a huge loss for a family. Additionally, the medical bills for any care received before your loved one died, as well as the hefty funeral expenses, can be a drain on family resources. The experienced wrongful death attorneys at Curtis Legal Group understand how difficult this time is and how important receiving financial compensation for your loved one’s tragic passing can be. Our attorneys will prove that your family’s monetary losses, as well as emotional, caregiving, and other needs, are considered.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

By law, California only allows certain individuals to file a wrongful death claim. These individuals sometimes include surviving spouses, qualified domestic partners, children, and grandchildren.

Finding a trustworthy and caring attorney to guide your family through filing a wrongful death claim or lawsuit is essential to making the process go smoothly while you are grieving. Curtis Legal Group understands what a sorrowful and confusing time an unexpected family death can be. Our lawyers will investigate the events surrounding the death of your loved one and determine how to proceed with your case.

Our team will gather all necessary evidence, which will vary based on the circumstances of the death. We will determine the amount of compensation to fight for and will build a strong case against the person or organization responsible for the unnecessary death of your loved one. We have extensive experience fighting with insurance companies to get families the financial compensation they deserve. Insurance companies do not have your best interests at heart and do not want to provide your family with maximum compensation. We are prepared to fight against their tactics and ensure your family is taken care of. Wrongful death cases will often settle out of court; however, if a settlement cannot be reached, we are prepared to fight for your family in court.

California Wrongful Death Attorneys

Our caring and experienced personal injury attorneys understand that our work cannot heal the wounds caused by the unexpected and often preventable death of your loved one, but we can help bring you closure by holding the responsible party or parties accountable and provide compensation to give your family a stronger financial foundation with which to move forward. If you believe someone else’s actions were the cause of your loved one’s death, contact Curtis Legal Group today at 1-800-LAW-3080.

Frequently Asked Questions

What qualifies as wrongful death?

Wrongful death occurs when someone is killed due to the misconduct or negligence of a person or entity. It is different from murder or manslaughter, both of which are criminal charges. When someone files a wrongful death lawsuit, they are seeking to collect financial compensation for the loss of their loved one.

What are the most common causes of wrongful death?

Some common causes of wrongful death include car accidents, medical malpractice, airplane accidents, workplace accidents, nursing home abuse or negligence, and products liability. Any situation where a death occurs due to someone’s incorrect actions or negligence could be pursued as a wrongful death case.

How long do wrongful death cases take?

The length of time required to resolve a wrongful death case varies greatly depending on the details of the case. Some death claims can be finalized in a matter of months, but many wrongful death cases take from one to four years. You have two years from the date of the accident to file a wrongful death lawsuit.

How do you prove wrongful death?

In order to be able to bring a wrongful death case, the plaintiff needs to prove that the defendant had a duty to act in a way that would have prevented the death. For example, drivers have a duty to obey traffic laws and drive safely. Doctors have a duty to provide appropriate medical care to patients. The case hinges on the ability of the plaintiff to prove the defendant’s negligence or misconduct caused their loved one’s death.

Who gets the money in a wrongful death lawsuit in California?

Any compensation awarded in a wrongful death lawsuit in the state of California is awarded in the following order:

  1. The surviving spouse or domestic partner.
  2. The surviving children.
  3. The surviving grandchildren.
  4. Whoever is next in line to inherit.

In the death of a minor, the compensation goes to the parents.