Skip to main content

When you lose a loved one, your world comes crashing in. The pain and suffering you feel may be magnified when your loved one’s death was caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing. In California, you can file a wrongful death lawsuit or a survival action as a result of the death of your loved one. There are certain requirements for each claim, but the two actions can be combined into the same lawsuit in California if all of the requirements are met.

Wrongful death lawsuits are meant to compensate the deceased’s survivors for their losses, and survival actions allow the deceased’s estate to recover damages to which the deceased would have been entitled if they had lived. If you lost a loved one and believe you are entitled to compensation, the dedicated attorneys at Kash Legal would like to discuss your case with you today.

Who Can Bring a Wrongful Death Claim in California?

California’s Code of Civil Procedure Section 377.60 sets forth the wrongful death statute, which provides a legal remedy for the survivors of the deceased. Specifically, the statute allows only specific heirs of the deceased to bring wrongful death lawsuits against the party who caused the deceased’s death. The following heirs of the deceased are permitted to bring a wrongful death lawsuit:

  • Surviving spouse
  • Domestic partner
  • Children
  • Grandchildren (only if all children of the deceased have died)
  • Others who would be entitled to inherit the deceased’s estate under California’s laws of intestate succession

Although there are some exceptions, the general statute of limitations for bringing a wrongful death lawsuit is two years from the date of the victim’s death. In a wrongful death lawsuit, the plaintiff heir must claim the defendant’s actions that caused the deceased’s death were negligent, intentional, or reckless. 

The plaintiff can potentially recover compensatory damages. The economic compensatory damages on the line include burial expenses, funeral expenses, loss of services, and loss of financial support. The non-economic compensatory damages on the line include loss of consortium, loss of love, loss of companionship, loss of society, and loss of moral support. Typically, you cannot recover punitive damages in a wrongful death case, and damages for pain and suffering are not usually recoverable. There are certain exceptions to these rules; therefore, it is crucial to have an experienced legal team guiding you through your lawsuit.

Who Can Bring a Survival Action in California?

California’s Code of Civil Procedure Section 377.30 provides for survival actions, which are designed to allow the deceased’s estate to recover damages to which the deceased would have been entitled if the deceased had lived. Only the representative of the deceased’s estate is permitted to bring a survival action against the party responsible for the deceased’s death. A survival action can only be brought if time passed between the time of the wrongful act and the victim’s death.

Survival actions are meant to compensate the deceased’s estate for damages suffered by the deceased between the time of the wrongful act and the deceased’s death. The statute of limitations for a survival action is either two years after the wrongful act or six months after the victim’s death, whichever is later. Unlike in wrongful death cases, punitive damages are recoverable in survival actions. As of 2022, the deceased’s estate potentially can recover damages for both the deceased’s disfigurement and the deceased’s pain and suffering. Other recoverable damages include lost wages, medical expenses, and property damage. Depending on the unique circumstances surrounding your loved one’s death, you may be able to combine both a wrongful death and survival action into the same lawsuit. You will need a skilled attorney who can effectively argue both causes of action and fight for the applicable damages.

Contact the Experienced Attorneys at Kash Legal to Discuss Your Wrongful Death and Survival Action Today

If you lost a loved one due to someone’s wrongful act, you deserve to be compensated for your losses through a wrongful death claim. Additionally, if your loved one suffered damages between the time of the wrongful act and the time of their death, their estate may be entitled to recoup those damages as well. Our injury attorneys know how to fight for your rights, and they may be able to recover the maximum amount of damages you are owed.

Navigating the courts after the death of a loved one can be extremely hard to do. At Kash Legal, we want you to know that you are not alone. Our experienced attorneys are ready to fight for you in your wrongful death and survival action. To speak with one of our esteemed attorneys, please fill out our contact form or call (888) 527-4128 today.

Get Your Free Case Consultation

We will be in touch within 24 hours.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Personal Injury Law Firm Who Cares

attention icon
Personal Attention
respected icon
Respected Lawyers
consultation icon
Risk - Free Consultation
gurantee icon
No Win, No Fee Guarantee
CALL US: 888-527-4128