When a family member dies, it is a hard situation to handle. When the negligence of another person causes it, it can leave the surviving family members searching for answers about why it happened. Orange County wrongful death lawyers help these families seek out the damages to help the family find their closure and feel more secure. When the person who dies is the primary income source for the family, it can cause more damage than just the pain of losing that family member. With the help of experienced lawyers, families do not have to lose their homes due to their inability to pay.
Who Can Be Found Liable in Wrongful Death Lawsuits?
When an Orange County wrongful death lawyer takes your case and files a lawsuit, there can be one or more people that can be found at fault for the accident. In some instances, they will file lawsuits against any possible defendant who could be found liable for the death of a loved one because, in most cases, this is the only closure the family gets in these types of cases.
The most common defendants found in wrongful death claims:
- The driver at fault in an automobile accident
- The employer of the driver who is at fault in an automobile accident (while on the job)
- The designer or road construction company that is at fault for building a faulty roadway
- A government agent who did not provide warning of hazards in the road that caused an accident
- The manufacturer, distributor, and installer of a faulty vehicle part
- Anyone who served, sold, or distributed alcohol to an impaired driver that caused an accident
- The owner of the premises where the selling, serving, or distributing of alcohol took place, and an impaired driver caused an accident
A wrongful death lawyer will have experience handling these types of cases and may be able to see more parties at fault than the plaintiff initially sought. When this happens, the lawyer can file lawsuits against more than one guilty party.
The Attributes of a Wrongful Death Lawyer
Wrongful death lawyers in the Orange County area should meet a specific set of qualifications if a client is looking at them for legal representation. A client will want to investigate the lawyer to see if they have the expertise you need for the lawsuit they want to file. Looking into their percentage of case success will also give you an idea of how competent they are. Checking the credentials of the potential wrongful death lawyer can give more background on their case successes.
When looking for the right wrongful death lawyer in the Orange County area, you need not look any further than the Irvine offices of TorkLaw. When you begin looking at TorkLaw for your wrongful death lawsuit, you will see that they meet all of the requirements of being an excellent wrongful death lawyer. These lawyers are knowledgeable and have the expertise to back up their knowledge.
Just like personal injury cases, wrongful death lawsuits are handled by a contingency fee contract. The contract between the plaintiff and the lawyer states that the lawyer will receive a percentage of the amount awarded to them for their legal services. This means that nothing is due until the case has been finalized in the courts. The family of the decedent does not have to worry about coming up with the money for legal representation upfront.
How Can an Orange County Wrongful Death Lawyer Prove Wrongful Death
When a wrongful death lawyer enters a courtroom to fight a wrongful death claim for an eligible party, they are doing so because the elements of negligence have been proven, and they are ready to lay these before the court. The elements that must be proven are almost identical to the negligence in personal injury lawsuits. The only difference is that the plaintiff is likely a surviving family member of the negligence instead of the victim.
- Duty of Care
- The defendant in the case was required to act responsibly to the victim in the wrongful death claim.
- Breaching the Duty of Care
- Once the lawyer has established the duty of care, they can then prove to the courts that the defendant breached their duty of care to the victim in the wrongful death lawsuit.
- Once the breach has been defined, they can prove to the judge and the court that it was this breach in the duty of care that resulted in wrongful death.
Who Can Be the Plaintiff in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Per CCP § 377.60, California law permits the following parties as plaintiffs in a wrongful death lawsuit:
- Surviving spouses
- Surviving domestic partners
- Surviving children
- Putative spouse (if proof that the marriage was in good faith)
- Dependent of the decedent
- Children of the putative spouse
Why Orange County Wrongful Death Lawyers File Claims
The point of filing the wrongful death claim is to help the surviving members of the victim’s family find closure and help with the expenses they have incurred due to the unexpected and wrongful death of their family member. The most common damages that are sued for include:
- Funeral and burial costs
- Medical expenses incurred before death
- Loss of financial support
- Loss of the income of the decedent
- Loss of society and companionship
- The pain and suffering of losing the decedent
Reasons to Choose an Orange County Wrongful Death Lawyer
When a wrongful death occurs in the Orange County area of California, finding a wrongful death lawyer who has the passion for handling the case with urgency and professionalism can make a difference in the success of the case. Too often, wrongful death lawyers will only focus on the payout and not the case itself. The Orange County wrongful death lawyers at TorkLaw focus on the clients and their needs before they look at the amount they will get paid. These lawyers are passionate about helping those family members gain the only closure they may get in the wrongful death of a loved one.
TorkLaw offices offer free case consultations. They can be reached, toll-free, at 888.845.9696.