If a relative or loved one loses their life due to the negligence of someone else, your family is likely eligible for compensation through a wrongful death lawsuit. However, when filing this type of case, you will encounter complications that require the assistance of a wrongful death attorney in San Diego. In this post, we will highlight some of the steps you need to take beforehand to ensure that you are going about the process the right way.
Step #1: Determining Who is Eligible to File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
The state of California limits eligibility to file wrongful death lawsuits to a specific group of people. Only the following parties can perform this kind of legal action:
- Surviving spouse
- Surviving Domestic partner
- Surviving children
- Anyone entitled to the property left behind by the deceased when there are no other surviving relatives. This rule is known as “Intestate Succession.”
Furthermore, individuals who suffered direct economic damages from the death of a loved one may also be able to file a lawsuit. You should consult a lawyer first to determine your legal standing in filing a wrongful death lawsuit.
Related post: 7 Qualities to Look For When Hiring a Wrongful Death Attorney
Step #2: Assess the Damages of Your Case
Before filing a lawsuit, you should understand the different types of personal injury damages that come into play. In California, you can receive compensation for the following:
- Reimbursement for losses that are a direct result of the death
- Personal losses experienced by loved ones in the aftermath of the death
You can also assess the total cost of the damages by keeping track of medical bills, funeral and burial expenses, and lost wages. These are damages that directly affect the estate of the deceased. Further, the death of a family member or loved one can cause a huge economic impact, especially for households with several young children.
Step #3: Be Wary of Time Restrictions
If you are going to file a wrongful death lawsuit, you must do it within a specific time period. This is known as the statute of limitations. In California, you have two years to file a lawsuit from the time the person’s death occurred. Remember, the claim is no longer valid once you exceed the two-year deadline.
The Discovery Process
Once you file a lawsuit, your lawyers will undergo what is known as the “discovery process.” This is when both sides will exchange the facts they gathered and interview witnesses of the incident. They will also obtain depositions from the parties involved in the case.
Related post: What to do when a Loved One Is Killed by a Wrongful Act of Another
Wrongful Death Trials
You should keep in mind that your lawsuit can potentially go to all the way to trial, where a jury will review all the evidence presented before them, including witness testimony and medical records. They will ultimately decide if, and how much, compensation you will be rewarded for the damages you sustained due to a loved one’s death.
Hire a Lawyer You Can Trust
The wrongful death attorneys here at HHJ Trial Attorneys have the experience that you need which is why you can count on them to fight for the compensation that you deserve. This field of law is often difficult to navigate which is why you should always have a team of personal injury attorneys in San Diego on hand. Week in and week out, our personal injury lawyers litigate cases for the victims living in San Diego and different areas of southern California. Schedule an appointment with us today!
Testimonial from Taryn, Satisfied Client
This firm is the best. I was injured in a serious car accident where I had a serious back injury. My friend told me that HHJ was the best personal injury law firm in California. I contacted the firm and was assigned to Michael Hernandez. Michael was extremely patient, sent me to the right doctors and put my health in front of every thing. After by back injury started healing, Michael resolved the case for a crazy high amount. Way beyond my expectations. I did not pay a dollar for their services out of pocket. I highly recommend this firm for anyone that was injured in a car accident.