Suffering the loss of a loved one due to someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing is one of the most wrenching and devastating experiences a family can face. In the aftermath of such an event, you may have the right to pursue a wrongful death claim against the party or parties responsible for your loved one’s demise.
At Chandler Law, we can help you and other surviving family members investigate the accident, incident, or other scenarios that cause your loved one’s death. We can then determine whether you have sufficient grounds for a valid wrongful death lawsuit against those responsible, whether it is a person, persons, business or corporation, or even a government entity. As a personal injury lawyer in Fresno, our team has the option to bring two distinct claims. One is a “survival action,” which is brought on behalf of the deceased by his or her personal representative seeking compensation for the injuries the victim suffered. The other is a wrongful death claim brought on behalf of the surviving family members who suffered harm as a result of the loss of the victim.
Schedule a confidential case evaluation with a Fresno wrongful death attorney at Chandler Law by contacting us at (559) 825-2318. Hablamos español.
Per California Code of Civil Procedure 377.60, a wrongful death claim can be made by the following family members or their personal representatives:
- A surviving spouse or domestic partner
- Surviving children
- Surviving grandchildren when the decedent’s children are also deceased
- Stepchildren or other minors who depended on the decedent for a minimum of 50 percent of their financial support
These claims may be brought based on unintentional and intentional acts. These acts can include motor vehicle accidents, medical malpractice, slip and fall incidents, assault and battery, elder neglect or abuse, manslaughter, murder, or the abuse/neglect of a child.
Damages in Wrongful Death
Damages in a wrongful death claim can include both “economic” and “non-economic” damages. Economic damages are those associated with financial losses, such as funeral and burial expenses, financial support such as lost wages and future lost wages or other benefits, and the value of the household services the decedent would have provided if he/she had lived. These are based on the present value and not speculation. These are, however, not exact, and are often affected by the decedent’s life expectancy and anticipated work capability.
Non-economic are those damages without a tangible monetary number, such as the loss of companionship, affection, protection, emotional support, guidance, training, and sexual relations. These are also difficult to quantify, which is why you need to work with a trusted attorney. These damages are generally affected by the quality of the relationships between the decedent and his or her spouse and family members.
Survival Actions in California
These actions compensate for the harm done to the actual victim. They are brought by the decedent’s personal representative for losses such as those connected with the injury that the person endured, even if for a short period of time before death. These are complicated claims that our attorney can advise you of pertaining to your loved one’s death.