The loss of a companion, family member, or loved one can traumatize. It may take weeks or even months for survivors to come to grips with the extent of that trauma. Even if the death occurred naturally or as a result of a non-fault accident, the pain, confusion, and frustration can persist for years. When another party or organization caused or contributed to the death, the problems and confusion and anger only ratchet up. A survivor of someone killed in a car accident, or killed obviously as a result of nursing home abuse can file a wrongful death action in California to get compensated for things like loss of companionship, support and love; loss of income and financial support; loss of services; and more.

To hold a person or organization liable for wrongful death in California, you need to show that a third-party was negligent, carelessness, or otherwise at fault (even partially); and that this failure of duty to care caused or created the conditions that led to the death.

To make that more concrete, let's take a look at some examples:

1. Auto accident death.

A teenage driver talking on a cell phone blows through a red light and smashes into an SUV carrying a mother and her three young children. Upon impact, two of the children get seriously injured, and one of them ultimately dies. The teenage driver can face vehicular manslaughter charges, and the family of the deceased child can sue for wrongful death to recover for things like loss of companionship.

2. Product liability wrongful death.

A 50-year old diabetic man goes on a new medication purported to help control blood sugar and insulin, but the medication was not properly tested. As a result of taking this medication, the man develops serious side effects, which ultimately causes his death. His family could take action against the manufacturer of the drug for causing/contributing to his death.

Building a wrongful death case requires meticulous attention to detail as well as strategic focus. In California, claimants have a time window within which they must act. If you wait more than two years after the death to seek action, you may not get any traction, even if you have a bulletproof case.

To navigate the complicated logistics and law - and to "take yourself out of the equation" so you can focus on being with your family and healing, instead of worrying about how/whether to take action against a negligent third party - connect with the tried and trusted wrongful death attorneys at Caputo & Van Der Walde LLP. Our battle proven team has helped dozens of clients like you recover damages, and we can provide principled, strategic representation.

Contact us for a free and confidential first consultation - (800) 900-0863.

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