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Wrongful Death Lawyer

Sacramento Wrongful Death Attorney

Compassionate & Experienced Legal Counsel

When a loved one dies, the emotional toll can be overwhelming. When that death is the result of someone else’s negligence, the pain can be even more difficult to bear. At the Law Offices of Larry S. Buckley, our Sacramento wrongful death lawyer understands the unique challenges that surviving family members face. We are here to help you navigate the legal process and fight for the justice and fair compensation you are owed.

Our firm has been serving the Sacramento community for over 25 years. We are committed to providing compassionate, personalized legal services to each and every client we serve. Contact us today at (916) 297-4468 to request a free consultation.

What is a Wrongful Death?

Under California law, a “wrongful death” is a death that is caused by the “wrongful act or neglect of another.” In other words, if someone dies as a result of another person or party’s negligent, reckless, or intentional actions, the surviving family members may be able to file a wrongful death claim.

In California, to succeed in a wrongful death lawsuit, certain elements need to be proven. While I can provide some guidance, please note that legal proceedings can be complex, and it's essential to consult with a qualified attorney for accurate advice. 

Generally, these elements include:

  1. Duty of Care: Demonstrating that the defendant owed a duty of care to the deceased. For example, a doctor owes a duty of care to their patient, or a driver owes a duty of care to others on the road.
  2. Breach of Duty: Showing that the defendant breached that duty through negligence, recklessness, or intentional actions. This means proving that the defendant's actions or failure to act fell short of the expected standard of care.
  3. Causation: Establishing a direct link between the defendant's actions (or lack thereof) and the death of the individual. It involves proving that the defendant's breach of duty was the proximate cause of the death.
  4. Damages: Demonstrating the damages suffered as a result of the wrongful death. This can include economic damages (such as medical expenses, funeral costs, lost income) and non-economic damages (such as pain and suffering, loss of companionship).
  5. Standing to Sue: Confirming that the plaintiff has the legal right (standing) to bring the wrongful death lawsuit. Typically, immediate family members or other parties who have suffered financially from the death have standing.
  6. Statute of Limitations: Filing the lawsuit within the specified time limit set by the statute of limitations. In California, the statute of limitations for wrongful death cases is generally two years from the date of death, but there can be exceptions.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in California?

In California, the individuals who have the legal standing to file a wrongful death lawsuit are outlined under the California Code of Civil Procedure, specifically in Section 377.60-377.62. The following parties typically have the right to bring forth a wrongful death claim:

  • Surviving Family Members:
    • Spouse: The surviving spouse is usually eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
    • Children: If there's no surviving spouse, the deceased's children can usually file the lawsuit.
    • Dependents: Any person who was financially dependent on the deceased person at the time of death, such as stepchildren, parents, or other family members, may have the right to file a claim.
  • Personal Representative of the Estate: If the deceased person had a will or estate plan, the appointed executor or personal representative may be allowed to file the lawsuit on behalf of the estate.
  • Other Parties in Certain Circumstances: In some cases, individuals who might not fall directly into the categories above but can prove financial dependence on the deceased may have the right to file a wrongful death claim.

What Damages Are Available in a Wrongful Death Case?

While no amount of money can ever truly compensate you for the loss of your loved one, a wrongful death claim can help you recover the financial resources you need to move forward. It can also help you hold the at-fault person or party accountable for their actions.

Depending on the specifics of your case, you may be able to recover compensation for:

  • Funeral and burial expenses
  • Medical expenses related to the deceased person’s final injury or illness
  • Lost income and benefits
  • Lost future earnings
  • Lost inheritance
  • Loss of consortium
  • Loss of love, companionship, guidance, and support
  • Loss of household services
  • Pain and suffering
  • Punitive damages

How Can a Wrongful Death Lawyer Help?

After the death of a loved one, the last thing you want to do is deal with the legal process. However, filing a wrongful death claim can help you recover the financial resources you need to move forward. It can also help you hold the at-fault person or party accountable for their actions.

When you choose to work with our firm, you can expect:

  • Compassionate, personalized legal services: We understand that this is an incredibly difficult time for you and your family. We are here to provide the compassionate, one-on-one legal counsel you deserve.
  • Open and honest communication: We believe in keeping our clients informed every step of the way. We will provide you with regular updates on your case and are always available to answer your questions.
  • Aggressive representation: Our firm is not afraid to take on large corporations, insurance companies, and other powerful entities. We are skilled litigators who are not afraid to fight for you in court.
  • Proven results: We have a long track record of success and have recovered millions of dollars for our clients. We are prepared to put our extensive experience to work for you.

At the Law Offices of Larry S. Buckley, we are committed to helping you get through this difficult time. Our Sacramento wrongful death lawyer can handle all the legal details of your case so you can focus on your family and your healing.

Call the Law Offices of Larry S. Buckley at (916) 297-4468 or contact us online to request a free consultation.

Why Choose Law Offices of Larry S. Buckley?

  • We Are Experienced

    We have handled almost every type of personal injury case and have recovered millions of dollars.

  • We Are Available 24/7

    We understand that accidents can happen at any time and we're here for you day and night.

  • We Are Committed

    We are focused on providing our clients an exceptional customer service and legal experience.

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