Cropped shot of a man placing a white rose on a grave

How Common is Wrongful Death in California?

Death is a fact of life. However, sometimes the death of a person is the fault of someone else. In these cases, known as wrongful death cases, the law recognizes that in wrongful death cases the person who caused the death should be held accountable. While criminal law addresses cases where someone intentionally caused the death of another, civil law is more often used to address situations where someone negligently caused the death of another through their careless actions.

In California, you are able to file a civil wrongful death lawsuit in these situations if you meet the eligibility requirements. If a court rules in your favor, you can recover financial compensation that is meant to address the losses you suffered from the death of your love one. Civil wrongful death lawsuits are incredibly common in California, which is troubling given it indicates how widespread this kind of deeply harmful negligent behavior is.

With wrongful death lawsuits, the facts of the case are such that the deceased would be alive if it were not for the actions of the negligent actor. What does this look like in action? One of the most common causes of wrongful death in California is an automobile related accident, and in this situation examples of actions which lead to wrongful death include:

  • Drunk driving.
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or prescription medication.
  • Distracted driving, such as texting while driving or otherwise using your smartphone.
  • Driving while drowsy.
  • Aggressive driving, such as road rage.
  • Aggressive driving, such as attempting to cut off, pass someone, or drag racing.
  • The driver did not maintain their car properly, such as by ensuring its brakes properly functioned.

Another common cause of wrongful deaths in California is injuries that occur on the job. We go to work expecting to earn a paycheck, not to face life-threatening risk, yet this happens all too often. Examples of on-the-job actions which commonly cause wrongful death include:

  • Slip and fall.
  • Machinery-related injuries.
  • Falling from a high place, such as on a construction site.
  • Tools which fall from a high place.
  • Fire or electrocution.
  • Chemical spills.
  • Inadequate workplace security.

Of course, while auto accidents and on-the-job accidents are a leading cause of wrongful death in California, death resulting from medical malpractice is unfortunately incredibly common as well. This is one of the worst forms of wrongful death, as we go to the doctor expecting to get better. Common examples of medical malpractice in California include:

  • Prescription errors.
  • Nursing home abuse.
  • Surgical errors.
  • Inexperienced doctors performing procedures.
  • Failure to diagnose.
  • Errors with medical charts, such as improper documentation or confusing patient medical charts.
  • Leaving surgical or other medical equipment inside a patient.

No matter where the accident happened or under what circumstances, your loved one should not die due to the negligence of another person. If this has happened to you and your loved one, you deserve justice and compensation for your and their suffering. At J&Y Law, we have represented numerous clients in wrongful death suits who came to us after their loved ones were taken from them far too soon. We know how heartbroken and angry you are, and we will not rest until you get the justice you deserve. Contact us today to learn more.