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How are wrongful death claims handled?

When a tragic accident occurs, it can be difficult to properly identify who, if anyone is at fault. Wrongful death claims attempt to account for the preventable death of a person or people, and can be pursued under several different circumstances. That is why having a basic understanding of who is eligible to pursue wrongful death complaints, and how these types of personal injury claims generally proceed, can be helpful to moving forward with your own wrongful death case.

According to the Legislative Council of the State of California, multiple parties have the legal right to file wrongful death claims in the event that a person dies as a result of another party’s alleged negligence and/or wrongdoing. Typically, you are eligible to file wrongful death complaints if the deceased person in question was your parent. As the domestic partner or surviving spouse of the deceased person, you may pursue claims as well. It is also worth noting that you may be able to proceed with wrongful death complaints if you are the ex-spouse of the decedent.

In order to successfully prove that a particular party or parties should be held accountable for the fatal accident in question, The Legal Examiner explains that you should be able to illustrate several points of liability. The points of liability are identified as:

  • Causation
  • Duty
  • Breach of duty
  • Damages

The process of effectively presenting the points of liability in your case can be lengthy and involved. Once the incident investigation is completed, you and your legal counsel will likely develop a strategy for pursuing your claims. The demand and mediation process may follow and the case will ultimately reach a resolution, which can be anything from a settlement agreement to a jury trial judgment. Of course, these general guidelines outlining wrongful death personal-injury claims do not apply to every case and should not be interpreted as legal counsel.

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