Wrongful Death

When one person commits a wrongful act against another (either negligently, recklessly, or intentionally), this can sometimes result in fatality. According to Code of Civil Procedure 377.60. (California’s wrongful death law), if a person dies due to someone else’s wrongful act, surviving family members or the deceased’s estate can sue for damages. There is also a similar action called Loss of Consortium, which allows the spouse or registered domestic partner who is deprived of companionship and intimacy following the death of their partner to recover non-economic compensatory damages for the loss of love, companionship, comfort, care, assistance, protection, affection, society, and moral support, and the loss of the enjoyment of sexual relations or the ability to have children. California “survival” cause of action (CCP 377.30), on the other hand, allows to bring an action on behalf of the victim’s estate to compensate for losses suffered by the victim (as opposed to the family) from the wrongful act. Survival cause of action, therefore, is not concerned with the loss suffered by the victim’s family but rather with the losses suffered by the victim himself.

Losing a family member is a devastating experience. It completely changes the remainder of the lives of the surviving family members. In many instances, this emotional burden is coupled with other financial burdens and hardships resulting from the family member’s death. Under California wrongful death law, surviving family members or the estate of the deceased can sue the wrongful party for burial and funeral expenses for the decedent, amounts the deceased would have earned as income, pain, and suffering, and disfigurement of the decedent, compensation for the loss of the deceased’s companionship and support.

Losing a family member is a painful and devastating experience, and it becomes even more challenging when you have to deal with the legal aspects of wrongful death. We are here to support you and help you defend your rights during this difficult time. We understand the emotional toll that a loss can take on you and your family, and we are committed to providing you with the guidance and representation you need.

At Oguz Law, we carefully examine the individual circumstances of each case to provide personalized legal services. We aim to obtain the highest compensation possible for our clients based on their injuries. We understand that every case is unique, which is why we take a tailored approach to ensure the best possible outcome for our clients.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    The plaintiffs can sue for compensatory damages to recover both economic and non-economic losses. Economic damages can be funeral and burial expenses, the financial support the deceased would have contributed to the family during their lifetimes, the loss of gifts or benefits the heirs could have expected to receive from the deceased, and the reasonable value of household services the deceased would have provided. Non-economic damages, on the other hand, can include loss of companionship, protection, affection, moral support, sexual relations, and damages for the decedent’s pain, suffering, or disfigurement. Interestingly, however, it may not include the heir’s grief, sorrow, or pain and suffering caused by their loved one’s death.

    An heir cannot generally recover punitive damages in wrongful death cases under California law unless the deceased was killed as the result of felony homicide for which the defendant has been convicted. Yet, claiming punitive damages under “survival action” may be possible on behalf of the decedent’s estate.

    There are no upfront attorney fees. We don’t get paid unless we are successful in obtaining compensation. We work on a contingency fee basis and get a certain percentage of the settlement as an attorney fee at the end of the process.

    Usually, the law sets a time limit for a claim to be brought, and if the claim isn’t brought within that time frame set by the law, the injured party loses his right to make a claim. The California wrongful death statute of limitations and survival actions is two years. In wrongful death, this two-year period starts from the date of death. In survival actions, the estate has a two-year time limit to sue from the later date of an injury or six months after death. To better analyze your claim, please consult our attorneys.

    As every person who suffers an injury, it is understandable that you might be wondering about the potential of compensation. Although there are certain aspects that we take into account while evaluating your case, it is almost impossible to provide an exact number that you can recover. There are many aspects that you can’t foresee or control. One of them is the policy limits of the wrongful party. There might be $15,000 worth of medical expenses, but if the wrongful party’s policy limit is California state minimum, the highest settlement you can get is limited to that amount.
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