Fresno Personal Injury Lawyers | Accident Attorneys
Fresno Wrongful Death Attorneys
The sudden passing of a family member is one of life’s most tragic events. It’s normal to be consumed by grief for months or even years afterward, and the emotional scars may never fully heal. Coping with the loss can be particularly difficult when another person’s negligence or intentional misconduct was to blame. If this applies to your situation, our Fresno wrongful death attorneys may be able to help you obtain monetary damages.
Our lawyers have the knowledge, experience, and resources to take on private individuals, government entities, and businesses of all sizes. We have achieved successful outcomes against some of the largest insurance carriers in California. No matter the cause of your loved one’s death, we can help you determine if you have grounds for a claim and how best to proceed. For a free case review, call us today at 1-800-GO-HARRIS.
What Evidence Will My Attorney Need to Prove Liability?
In tort law, proving “liability” means proving that the defendant or defendants were legally responsible for the death, injury, or loss. Most successful wrongful death cases are brought on the basis of negligence, meaning that the defendant breached the duty of care owed to the decedent, and this breach of duty was the proximate cause of his or her death; however, it is also possible to bring a wrongful death claim on the basis of strict liability, in which case a finding of negligence or intent would not be needed to establish liability.
If you intend to bring the claim on the basis of negligence, the types of evidence that will contribute to your case depend on the facts surrounding the death. For example, if your loved one died in a car accident, crucial evidence of fault may include the police report, percipient witness deposition, photos of the scene, surveillance and dashcam footage, and the deposition of an accident reconstruction expert. If the death occurred due to a defective product, evidence of liability may include the product’s packaging and instruction manual, blueprints, schematics, the deposition of a product specialist, and percipient witness deposition.
There are many other kinds of evidence that might play a role in your case depending on the circumstances. Often, valuable evidence is only available for a limited amount of time, so it is important that your Fresno wrongful death lawyer performs the investigation right away.
At Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, we always hit the ground running when someone turns to us for representation. The moment you retain our legal services, we will start the process of building your claim. This may involve visiting the accident scene, conducting interviews with eyewitnesses and your loved one’s healthcare team, filing subpoenas for evidence, and consulting with medical and accident reconstruction experts.
With many decades of combined experience in tort law, we know what it takes to establish liability in even the most complex wrongful death cases. We will diligently investigate your case from all angles to ensure it is as strong as possible when settlement negotiations begin.
How Will My Wrongful Death Lawyer Prove the Value of My Damages?
If your loved one did not immediately die as a result of the tort—meaning that he or she survived for a period of time after the fatal incident—you may be able to bring both a wrongful death claim and a survival action. Although these actions are often combined and brought to court together, it is important to distinguish between the two because each involves the pursuit of different kinds of damages. While a wrongful death claim seeks monetary damages for losses incurred by surviving family members, a survival action seeks damages that the decedent incurred between the fatal injury and his or her death.
The types of evidence your lawyer will need to prove damages depend on the kinds of damages you intend to pursue and their value. Key evidence may include:
- Medical bills the deceased accrued as a result of the fatal injury;
- The decedent’s financial records;
- Contractor estimates for property damage resulting from the tort;
- Bills and invoices for funeral and burial costs;
- Any evidence to prove benefits or gifts the deceased would have contributed;
- Any evidence to prove the services the deceased would have provided; and
- Evidence to prove the expected lifespan of the deceased and his or her beneficiaries at the time of death.
Discuss Your Case with a Wrongful Death Lawyer in Fresno Today: Call 1-800-GO-HARRIS
There are all sorts of legal hurdles you might encounter when pursuing monetary damages for the wrongful death of a family member. Our attorneys can help you overcome these hurdles and fight for the compensation you need to move on with life. To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation, contact us today at 1-800-GO-HARRIS or send us a message HERE.