If a loved one died as a result of the negligent actions (or inaction) of another person, you could be eligible for substantial financial compensation. A civil lawsuit is an opportunity for a harmed family (or eligible dependents) to recover the financial damages owed after such an unfortunate incident. The experienced Bakersfield wrongful death attorneys at Dordulian Law Group have been fighting for surviving family members for decades. We handle the stressful details so you don’t have to pay out-of-pocket for funeral or burial expenses, ensuring there is no struggle to pay the bills after a breadwinner tragically passes away.
Our experienced team of wrongful death lawyers has recovered more than $100,000,000 in settlements and verdicts for affected families over the years. We have handled all types of personal injury cases, with more than 40 years of combined experience and a 98% success rate. With Dordulian Law Group (DLG), you can trust that we will fight to recover all applicable compensation for your loss.
You may have heard the term ‘wrongful death’ on TV or in films, but many people are unaware of what exactly a wrongful death lawsuit entails. Wrongful death is a personal injury law subcategory that can include a wide variety of claims. A wrongful death lawsuit could involve everything from medical malpractice to murder, and even major car accidents. When you hear the term ‘wrongful death,’ you’re likely hearing a reference to a civil lawsuit brought by the family of an individual who died as a result of negligence or misconduct.
A wrongful death lawsuit can be filed by the surviving children, spouse, or other dependent family members. Wrongful death claims can also be filed by a person who represents the decedent’s estate.
After winning a wrongful death case, the defendant will be ordered by the court to compensate you for your loved one’s death. No fines or jail time will be involved, as the case is a civil matter rather than a criminal case. A criminal case involving the defendant could also proceed concurrently, however. But the outcome of that case would not impact a settlement or verdict in the civil case. A well-known example of a wrongful death case and a criminal case occurring at around the same time would be the O.J. Simpson murder trial. Simpson was found not guilty in the criminal trial, but he was found liable in the wrongful death civil claim brought by the families of Ronald Goldman and Nicole Brown Simpson.
Multiple parties can be held liable in a Bakersfield wrongful death case. Most wrongful death claims involve an individual defendant, but occasionally multiple people are named. A company or companies could also be named if a defective or faulty product led to the death of a loved one. California law stipulates that a wrongful death claim may be filed for recklessness, intentional misconduct, negligence, and gross negligence. Any of the following scenarios may qualify for a wrongful death civil lawsuit:
Under California’s ‘strict liability law,’ the defendant in the case could be held liable for wrongful death even if they were not negligent. However, this typically pertains only to cases involving defective products or dog bites. If you have questions regarding your wrongful death claim and potential eligibility, contact DLG 24/7. We’re here to answer any questions you may have and help you and your family recover the compensation you deserve.
Cases of wrongful death occur on countless occasions in the United States every year. Below are some key statistics regarding the prevalence of wrongful death claims:
If you have lost a loved due to any aforementioned cause, it behooves you to speak with an experienced and trusted Bakersfield wrongful death lawyer from Dordulian Law Group. Even if your type of wrongful death incident has not been referenced above, you may still have a valid claim. The best way to determine whether or not you should proceed with a wrongful death lawsuit is to contact DLG today about your case, your options, and your right to maximum financial compensation.
Wrongful death cases can vary substantially in value depending on the circumstances of the claim. As an example, the George Floyd wrongful death case against city of Minneapolis was settled for $27 million. According to USA Today, the settlement also included $500,000 to be directed to enhance the 38th Street and Chicago Avenue business district where Floyd was killed.
Surviving family members in a wrongful death case file a lawsuit in an effort to recover both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages may be used to help support the family with wages the decedent would have been able to provide. Courts will typically examine all the circumstances pertaining to the incident resulting in death to determine the value of economic damages. Some typical considerations may include:
Economic damages are those which can be calculated. Examples of some economic damages you may be eligible to receive in a wrongful death lawsuit include:
You may also be able to recover non-economic damages in a wrongful death lawsuit. Although these damages are often more difficult to calculate given their subjective nature (falling under the loss of consortium law in California), the experienced attorneys at DLG know how to develop a precise legal strategy that targets maximum recovery of non-economic damages. However, loss of consortium only applies to the surviving spouse or partner of the decedent. This law permits compensation for the following:
Ready to file a claim and pursue justice through a financial damages award? Our expert attorneys are available online or by phone now.
California law stipulates which family members/dependents are eligible to seek damages in a Bakersfield wrongful death claim. Some examples of potentially eligible individuals include:
California’s statute of limitations for filing a Bakersfield wrongful death claim is typically two years from the date of the death. Accordingly, eligible filers have two years from the date a loved one perished to file the lawsuit. There are exceptions to the rule, however, which surviving family members should consider. Known as the discovery rule, the statute of limitations may be extended under specific circumstances:
In wrongful death cases that are being pursued against a California public entity, claimants have only six months to file. If that claim is denied, an additional six months may be granted to file an appeal. If the case involves medical malpractice, the claimant may have three years from the date a loved one suffered an injury, or one year from the date on which he or she should have discovered the injury (whichever is sooner).
There are numerous complexities involved when filing a Bakersfield wrongful death lawsuit in California. This is one of several reasons why it’s so important that surviving family members always consult with an experienced Dordulian Law Group wrongful death attorney after suffering the loss of a loved one. DLG’s skilled and dedicated team will review your case and help you file a claim as soon as possible, ensuring your opportunity for recovering financial compensation is maintained.
After winning a Bakersfield wrongful death claim, it’s important to realize how you will be compensated. In the majority of cases, the defendant’s insurance company will pay you the damages award granted by the court. This could be in the form of a settlement or, if necessary, a verdict.
There are often limits to the maximum amounts insurance companies will pay in wrongful death claims, which is why the balance will likely come directly from the defendant. If a defendant does not have enough money at the time of a settlement or verdict, their wages will be garnished accordingly. Additionally, their assets will be seized. Speaking with an experienced Bakersfield wrongful death attorney at Dordulian Law Group about the award you may receive is an important step, as you will need to determine how this type of financial compensation will affect your taxes.
In addition to a wrongful death claim, you may have the option of filing a survivor’s claim in California. California Code of Civil Procedure 377.30 allows for damages to be awarded when a survival claim is filed for a loss incurred prior to death that the decedent would have otherwise been eligible to recover. A survivor’s claim can recover damages such as medical expenses or lost wages for the surviving family members. This type of claim does not, however, award damages for pain and suffering.
After suffering the loss of a loved one because of another person’s negligence, speaking with an experienced and proven personal injury attorney about a wrongful death claim is one of the most critical decision’s a family can make. Negligent action (or inaction) often leads to serious injuries and, tragically, the death of someone you love. To ensure justice is served, you should immediately file against the negligent party (noting the statute of limitations that applies to your specific claim) to ensure the case moves forward and you successfully recover maximum financial compensation. When a loved one dies, you need to take every measure available to recover any and all financial compensation you are rightfully owed.
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Upon suffering the loss of a loved one due to negligence in any type of incident, contact a DLG Bakersfield wrongful death lawyer immediately. The Bakersfield office of Dordulian Law Group can be reached at (661) 402-8811, or you may complete our free consultation contact form online to schedule an appointment with one of our team members.
DLG’s Wrongful Death Division has more than 40 years of combined experience and a 98% success rate. We have recovered more than $100 million in settlements and verdicts for our clients in myriad types of cases. We will use our experience and dedication to fight and recover a maximum financial damages award for you following such a tragic loss. When a loved one dies due to negligence, don’t settle for anything but the DLG Advantage.
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