Nothing can prepare a person for unexpectedly losing a loved one as a result of an accident caused by another party’s negligence. Regardless of what caused the accident that took the life of your family member, you deserve justice for your unimaginable loss. While no amount of compensation can ever bring back your loved one, you should file a wrongful death claim to help you pay for any expenses you are facing following their passing.
Younglove Law Group is a team of California personal injury lawyers with extensive experience handling wrongful death claims. When filing a wrongful death claim, it is important that you are aware of how long you have to complete the claims process before you are no longer eligible to pursue compensation.
What Is California’s Statute of Limitations for Wrongful Death Claims?
A statute of limitations is a specific period of time in which a person can pursue legal action after they have suffered an injury or loss of some kind. After suffering the loss of a family member due to wrongful death, it is important to take time to grieve. However, it is also crucial that you are aware of the state’s statute of limitations for wrongful death claims and retain the help of a lawyer as soon as possible to begin the claims process. This is because California’s statute of limitations for wrongful death is two years from the date that your loved one passed away.
While two years might seem like a lot of time, the claims process can be lengthy and there are certain elements, like gathering evidence, that can take longer. That is why it is vital that you begin working with your wrongful death lawyer as soon as possible to ensure you can pursue the best possible outcome for your claim and get the compensation you need.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in California?
Before you begin the process of pursuing compensation after losing a loved one, it is important that you understand who is eligible to file a wrongful death claim in California. The individuals who have the legal right to file a wrongful death claim are as follows:
- The Spouse of the Deceased: If the person who has passed away was legally married at the time of their death, the surviving spouse of the deceased has the right to file a wrongful death claim on their behalf.
- The Children of the Deceased: The deceased’s adult children can also file a wrongful death claim. This can include biological children, stepchildren, and fully adopted children of the decedent. If the children are minors, the court can appoint a guardian to file the wrongful death claim on behalf of the children.
- Grandchildren of the Deceased: If the spouse and children of the decedent are not able to file a claim, their grandchildren are eligible to file a wrongful death claim.
- Dependent Minors: Any dependent minors that have lived in the household for at least six months possibly have grounds to file a claim even if they are not legal children of the decedent.
- Parents of the Deceased: Parents who are able to prove that they were financially dependent on the decedent could be eligible to file a wrongful death claim in California.
- Other Heirs: If none of the above family members of the deceased are able to file a claim, then the heirs who stand to inherit from the decedent according to the California intestate succession laws can file a wrongful death claim.
- Next of Kin: If none of the relatives entitled to the decedent’s property are able to file, any of their next of kin will be eligible to file a wrongful death claim.
If you are unsure if you are eligible to file a wrongful death claim in California, contact a knowledgeable wrongful death lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal options.
Get Help From a California Wrongful Death Lawyer
Younglove Law Group is a California law firm with experience helping individuals who have lost a family member to wrongful death. Our team is passionate about providing specialized legal representation at every step of the process as we seek justice for your unimaginable loss.