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How the filing of a wrongful death lawsuit works

A family that loses a loved one due to either the negligent or carelessness actions of another may suffer losses on many different levels. A partner may lose his or her companion or a family may be left without their household's breadwinner, for example.

In each of these cases, there's a common element of unexpectedness. An individual's life was cut short without his or her loved ones being afforded a time to get their affairs in order in advance.

It's not necessary for a person to have been charged with a crime related to the decedent's demise in order for his or her survivor to file a wrongful death claim. An attorney, attempting to prove a wrongful death case, is not required to meet the same standard of proof of culpability required of prosecutors in trying criminal cases.

Wrongful death cases are also different from criminal ones in that they're not brought by a prosecutor. Instead, they are filed by the individual representing the decedent's estate. Any proceeds that are won from the filing of that lawsuit may ultimately be passed on to an individual's heirs or others designated in the individual's will.

There are a number of different types of events that may lead a decedent's loved one to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Some of the more common reasons these types of lawsuits are filed include because an individual dies as a result of medical malpractice, because he or she is exposed to a hazardous work environment or because he or she loses his or her life while under another's supervision.

Lawsuits of this sort are filed in response to an individual being killed in a fatal airplane, a car crash or in cases of murder.

If you have a loved one that has been killed under one of these circumstances or something similar, then you may want to consult with a San Bernardino wrongful death attorney. In doing so, he or she may be able to advise you of the different types of damages you can seek when filing your case.

Source: FindLaw, "Wrongful death overview," accessed Aug. 24, 2017

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