Call for a free consultation
Free consultation
Toll Free (833) 758-0785
Call for a free consultation
Free consultation

Anaheim Wrongful Death Lawyer

At Bridgford, Gleason & Artinian, we understand that the loss of a loved one is a difficult and emotional time. Our attorneys are here to help you through this difficult process and fight for your rights. You may be entitled to a sizeable financial award, and our experienced Anaheim wrongful death lawyers will work tirelessly to get your family the maximum settlement possible.

Since 1990, Bridgford, Gleason & Artinian has fiercely advocated for grieving families in Anaheim and throughout Orange County. As award-winning California trial attorneys with 75+ years of litigation experience, we’ve helped our clients recover over $1 billion in verdicts and private settlements.

Our attorneys can help you hold accountable those responsible for your family member’s wrongful death. Contact us today for a free consultation.

How a Wrongful Death Lawyer in Anaheim Can Help You 

Your family is already going through enough after losing a loved one in a tragic accident. Let an experienced attorney take over your wrongful death case for you so that you do not have to bear the burden of the legal process. 

A wrongful death attorney in Anaheim can provide tailored legal services, such as:

  • Comprehensive accident investigation
  • Evidence preservation and collection
  • Interviews with eyewitnesses
  • The hiring of highly qualified experts to support your case
  • Claims-filing paperwork and processes
  • Insurance settlement negotiations 
  • Wrongful death trial litigation, if a settlement cannot be reached

Most importantly, hiring a lawyer will give you and your family a trusted source of advice, support and information during this difficult time. Your lawyer will make sure you and your family have everything they need for the most effective and stress-free legal experience possible.

How Much Does a Lawyer Cost? 

At Bridgford, Gleason & Artinian, our wrongful death attorneys do not charge for their legal services unless a case succeeds in reaching a settlement or achieving a positive jury verdict. We charge $0 upfront for our services; you will only pay us if we win your case, guaranteed.

If your claim does result in financial compensation being awarded to your family, we will deduct our fee as a percentage of the overall amount won. With this arrangement, your family never has to pay for an attorney out-of-pocket to fight for the justice your deceased loved one deserves.

What Is the Definition of Wrongful Death in California?

California Code of Civil Procedure § 377.60 gives certain individuals the right to bring a cause of action for the death of a person when it is caused by the “wrongful act or neglect of another.” This can refer to any act or omission that constitutes negligence, carelessness, recklessness, medical malpractice or a wanton disregard for the safety of others. It can also refer to criminal acts and intent to harm.

Do I Have a Wrongful Death Case?

Not all unexpected deaths in Anaheim give surviving family members grounds to file wrongful death cases. A legal basis must exist for the claim, such as negligence. Negligence is the failure to act with reasonable care based on the circumstances, resulting in injury or death to another person. 

Negligence consists of four legal elements:

  1. Duty of care: a responsibility owed to the deceased person to act with a reasonable amount of care.
  2. Breach of duty: any act or omission that did not meet the duty of care, or that a reasonably prudent person would not have committed.
  3. Causation: a direct connection between the defendant’s breach of the duty of care and the deceased person’s (decedent’s) death.
  4. Damages: losses suffered by the plaintiff due to the event, such as funeral costs, lost income and inheritance, and grief or emotional distress.

A wrongful death claim must be proven as more likely to be true than not true based on evidence from the plaintiff or filing party. This burden of proof is known as a “preponderance of the evidence.” Our attorneys can determine whether your wrongful death case has merit during a free consultation in Anaheim.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in California?

In California, the right to file a lawsuit and demand financial compensation doesn’t disappear just because a victim is killed in an accident. Under the state’s wrongful death law, it shifts to surviving family members, including the surviving spouse, child(ren), parent(s), and other dependents.

You may have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit if you’ve recently lost a close family member due to another person’s wrongful actions or negligence.

Wrongful death claims often involve:

It’s essential to get a jumpstart on litigation. California has a two-year statute of limitations that applies to wrongful death claims. If you miss the deadline, you lose the opportunity to get the compensation you deserve.

What Types of Damages Are Available to Families After a Fatal Accident?

Under California law, surviving family members and dependents can receive awards for both economic and non-economic losses.

Economic damages help to offset the financial costs related to a victim’s death, including:

  • Value of household services
  • Lost wages, income, and financial support
  • Lost benefits and gifts
  • Medical expenses incurred prior to the victim’s death
  • Funeral and burial expenses

Non-economic damages help to compensate surviving family members for to hard-to-value trauma and life changes they experience, such as:

  • Loss of sexual relations
  • Loss of training and guidance
  • Loss of companionship, care, comfort, protection, affection, society, and moral support

Putting a price on a wrongful death claim can be challenging. The insurance company – and at-fault parties – will try to limit your payout. Our wrongful death attorneys in Anaheim will do everything possible to ensure that you’re properly compensated for your loss. We’ll launch a thorough investigation, work closely with experts, and dig deep to uncover the full scope and impact of your loved one’s wrongful death.

How Much Is My Case Worth?

At Bridgford, Gleason & Artinian, we realize no dollar amount can ever be equal to a human life. We recognize that no amount of money will ever bring your loved one back. However, we hope to give your family some degree of justice and closure by helping you hold someone accountable. 

Each case is entirely unique, with fair settlement values varying significantly based on the facts of the case, such as who is liable and what insurance coverage is available. There is no such thing as an “average” settlement value. If you wish to know how much your wrongful death claim could be worth, discuss your case in detail with our attorneys.

 Securing a just financial award could make it easier for your family to pay for losses related to the death and plan for your future. Our lawyers care about our clients and will fight to achieve maximum financial compensation on your behalf using aggressive legal strategies. We will pursue the best results possible for your specific case. 

Criminal vs. Civil Justice System After a Wrongful Death 

If your loved one dies due to criminal negligence or an individual breaking the law – such as in a case of fatal physical assault or a drunk driving car accident – your family may end up involved in both the criminal and civil justice processes in California.

The criminal justice system aims to hold an offender accountable for breaking the law. The goal is to impose a sentence, such as fines or jail time, to punish a defendant who is found guilty of the crime charged. The burden of proof in the criminal justice system is “beyond a reasonable doubt,” which is greater than a preponderance of the evidence. 

The goal of the civil justice system during a wrongful death claim is to make surviving loved ones whole again by providing financial compensation for their losses. No crime needs to be committed for a family to file a wrongful death claim, nor is it a requirement to prove that the defendant intended to hurt or kill the decedent.

The same defendant in California could be held both criminally and civilly liable for causing the death of another person. However, it is also possible for a defendant to be found not guilty of a crime in relation to a death but still found liable for damages in a wrongful death claim due to the different burdens of proof.

Will My Wrongful Death Case Go to Court?

This question can only be answered by a wrongful death attorney in Anaheim after a review of your case. However, most wrongful death claims in California do not have to go to court. They reach settlements, or private agreements between insurance companies and claimants. Settlements are often preferred by both parties, as they are faster and cheaper.

If an insurance company refuses to offer a fair settlement for your family’s wrongful death case or rejects your claim, you may have no choice but to take the defendant to court in pursuit of fair compensation. In this scenario, a jury verdict could potentially pay more than what the insurer was originally proposing in a settlement offer.

In the event that your wrongful death case goes to trial in Anaheim, it will involve a discovery phase, where both sides of the case interview each other to gather any new information. Then, both parties will present evidence and witness testimonies to a judge or jury at trial. If the jury believes the plaintiff met the burden of proof, a verdict will be awarded in an amount deemed fair by the jurors.

Evidence Used to Support a Wrongful Death Claim 

Evidence plays a vital role in a wrongful death case in Anaheim. Without evidence supporting the claim being made or damages being sought, an insurance company may reject benefits or a jury may rule in favor of the defendant. Supporting evidence must be clear, relevant and convincing.

Types of evidence that may be involved in a wrongful death case include:

  • Accident reports
  • Police reports
  • Medical records
  • Coroner’s report
  • Eyewitness statements
  • Expert testimony
  • Forensic evidence
  • Photographs or video footage 
  • Financial records
  • Proof of losses

Keep in mind that proof of intent to harm is not required in a wrongful death case. It is enough to show using evidence that the defendant did not meet the duty of care and that this resulted in the death of the victim. Our lawyers can help you gather and present compelling evidence to support your case.

How Long Do I Have to File a Wrongful Death Claim in Anaheim?

In general, a family in California has two years to file a wrongful death claim. This deadline, known as the statute of limitations, begins counting down on the date of the deceased individual’s death in most cases.

California Code of Civil Procedure § 335.1 states:

  • CHAPTER 3. The Time of Commencing Actions Other Than for the Recovery of Real Property [335 – 349.4] (Chapter 3 enacted 1872.)
    • 335.1.
    • Within two years: An action for assault, battery, or injury to, or for the death of, an individual caused by the wrongful act or neglect of another.

Various circumstances can shorten or extend the statute of limitations on a wrongful death claim in Anaheim. If the defendant is facing criminal charges for the same incident, for example, the courts may toll (pause) the statute of limitations until the conclusion of the criminal case.

Note that the statute of limitations only applies to a wrongful death lawsuit; an insurance claim for the death of a loved one should be filed much sooner – ideally, within the first few days after the decedent’s death.

Call Our Trusted Anaheim Wrongful Death Lawyers Today

The thought of taking on a powerful insurance company, corporation, or hospital after experiencing the tragic death of a family member can be overwhelming. You don’t have to navigate this difficult time in your life on your own. Our Orange County personal injury attorneys are here to fight for you. Call Bridgford, Gleason & Artinian, and let our experienced Anaheim wrongful death attorneys fight to get you the money you deserve.

We boast a legal team with over 75 years of litigation and courtroom experience and a track record that simply can’t be beaten. We’ve won over $1 billion for our clients, and we’re ready to help you get top results, too. Contact our law office or call (949)-831-6611 to arrange a free initial case evaluation now.

ADVERTISING MATERIAL: If you have been affected by the wildfires in West Maui / Lahaina in Hawaii then contact us immediately. BGA is working with Jay Stuemke, Esq. of the Stuemke Law Firm PLLC in Kailua, HI who is Of Counsel on the Maui Fires. Read the Press Release Here.