Wrongful Death From A Car Accident Lawyer

Brad Nakase, Attorney

Email Brad

A San Diego Wrongful Death Attorney is a personal injury attorney that is skilled professional experienced in wrongful death lawsuits. We will not tell you is that we understand what you are going through with the loss of a loved one, because quite frankly we have not experienced your emotional pain, anguish and suffering. We will tell you is that our team of dedicated legal professionals is committed to work diligently to obtain the financial compensation you deserve from those responsible for the death of your loved one through their negligent actions.

The purpose behind the wrongful death statute (Civil Code Proc. § 377.60) is to provide compensation for the loss of companionship and other losses resulting from the death of a loved one.

Who can file a wrongful death lawsuit?

Your ability to file a wrongful death lawsuit is directly tied to the relationship that you have to the decedent. As noted below, depending on the circumstances there are numerous individuals who could potentially file a wrongful death lawsuit, including; a surviving spouse; domestic partner; children; and various dependents of the decedent:

A cause of action for the death of a person caused by the wrongful act or neglect of another may be asserted by any of the following persons or by the decedent’s personal representative on their behalf:

  • the decedent’s surviving spouse, domestic partner, children, and issue of deceased children, or,
  • if there is no surviving issue of the decedent, the persons, including the surviving spouse or domestic partner, who would be entitled to the property of the decedent by intestate succession” (without a last will & testament).
  • According to section (f) (1); “domestic partner” means a person who, at the time of the decedent’s death, was the domestic partner of the decedent in a registered domestic partnership established in accordance with subdivision (b) of Section 297 of the Family Code.

Cal Code Civ Proc § 377.60

In order to be a domestic partner, with-standing to sue for wrongful death under CCP § 377.60, an individual has to meet the criteria of both Fam C § 297(a) and (b).

Regardless of the number of potential plaintiffs in a wrongful death lawsuit, there is a single verdict for all recoverable damages.

Wrongful Death Lawyer Free Consultation

A San Diego Wrongful Death Attorney will evaluate your case and determine the best course of action moving forward to identify all potential defendants and properly pursue your claim. This requires an investigation into the facts of your case and may include a review of police reports, accident reports, insurance company documents, etc. As previously noted above, the basis of any wrongful death action is the negligence or wrongful act another that resulted in the death of your loved one.

What is the average settlement for wrongful death?

Wrongful death settlement ranges from $10,000 to $5 million dollars. The money demands on who died. For example, if your brother who you haven’t seen or spoken with in thirty years died and he is homeless, the money is very low. Compare to if your brother is a 45 year old surgeon and he takes care of the entire family including you, settlement can in $30 million.

Financial compensation in a wrongful death case may be recoverable in one, or multiple categories depending on the circumstances of the case:

“In an action under this article, damages may be awarded that, under all the circumstances of the case, may be just…. The court shall determine the respective rights in an award of the persons entitled to assert the cause of action (claim).”

Pecuniary Loss

The measure of damages for injury causing death is limited to pecuniary (monetary) loss suffered by relatives of the person killed. This may be a loss arising from your having been deprived of something to which you were legally entitled, if the deceased had lived, or from having been deprived of benefits, which from all circumstances of the case it could be reasonably expected you would have received from the deceased had his/her life not been taken.[v]

Loss of Comfort, Protection, and Society

If circumstances warrant, you may be entitled to financial compensation for having been deprived of the comfort, protection, and society (companionship) of your loved one. Courts have considered these factors as not only proper elements of recovery, but that they have actual monetary value and cannot be compensated for by merely nominal damages.[vi]

Loss of Earnings and Earning Capacity 

You may be entitled to financial compensation for loss of support and earning capacity of your loved one.[vii] One’s ability to earn, rather than amount actually earned, is what is considered in arriving at the amount of financial compensation to be awarded.[viii]

Funeral Expenses

You can recover financial expenses for the funeral of your loved one.[ix]

Death of a Child

A parent may recover financial compensation for the death of an adult child only according to what they might reasonably expect from him/her when all circumstances are considered, including the child’s ability and disposition.[x]

For the death of a minor child, a jury may consider the value of society, comfort, and protection which might reasonably be expected by the parent had the child lived, as well as loss suffered by reason of having been deprived of any financial benefit reasonably to be expected from the child after adulthood had the child lived.[xi]

Death of Parent  

The financial interest of children by loss of their parents does not necessarily end when they reach adulthood. A jury, in such a case, may allow for probable loss of any benefit of pecuniary (monetary) value, which the child would probably receive from his/her parent after reaching adulthood.[xii]

A wrongful death attorney  will help you maneuver through the process of pursuing a claim for the loss your loved one. While this can be a complex endeavor, we have the experience, tools, resources, and skills to help you obtain the maximum amount of financial compensation. We are committed to always giving our best effort, as we know that our clients are counting on us! Please let us earn your trust.

I’d like to hear your story. What happened?

Call or Write for a Free Confidential Consultation

If you or someone you love need an a aggressive and compassionate attorney who will listen and aggressively protect your interest, we invite you to call attorney Brad for a free consultation.

I’d like to hear your story. What happened?

$0 Upfront

There is no money upfront to hire me.

$0 Unless We Win

No Fee – Unless We Win

$13,000,000.00+ Won for Clients

I’ve won $13 million dollars for my clients.

98% Success Rate

I’ve won 98% of my clients’ cases.

Insurance Insider

I’ve worked at a major national law firm serving big name insurance companies by defending insurance companies and their insureds who were sued for millions of dollars.

I Care

My success is measured in the real differences made to my clients’ quality of life. I focus on achieving the most exceptional and fairest compensation for my clients.


Car Accident Lawyer

I have served hundreds of injured persons. Also, I have worked at a national law firm hired by big-name insurance companies to defend big businesses against high stakes lawsuits stemming from car accidents. I know all the tricks the insurance companies use to minimize money payment to injured persons.  Learn More

Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

I own and ride a Honda CBR500. I understand the unique challenges of being a rider in an ocean of cars. A motorcycle accident can occur anywhere and at an instant which may result in life-changing injuries. As a rider, I have a unique insight to protect your interest and ensure you are fairly compensated for your injuries.

Trucking Accident Lawyer and Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer

I’ve helped major insurance companies defending truckers in severe injury cases which include traumatic brain injuries. I have a unique insight into how big insurance companies defend trucking accidents. I will fight hard to ensure you are fairly compensated for your injuries.

Uber Accidents Lawyer

I have worked at a major national law firm hired by the insurance company to defend Uber drivers. I’ve defended Uber drivers in severe injuries cases and know how insurance companies defend injury cases.

Taxi Accident Lawyer

I have worked at a major national law firm hired by the insurance company to defend taxi drivers; I’ve defended taxi drivers sued in serious injuries cases and know how insurance companies defend injury cases.

Trip and Fall Injury Lawyer

Trip and fall cases are challenging because of the complexity of the issues involved. To establish liability, trip and fall cases may require safety engineers, structural engineers, or any other experts qualified to testify regarding the standard of care in the specific situation and whether it was breached.

Legal Reference

CA Civil Code 377.60

[i] Phraner v. Cote Mark, Inc. (Cal. App. 4th Dist. May 20, 1997)

[ii] Holguin v. Flores (Cal. App. 2d Dist. Sept. 15, 2004)
[iii] Perkins v. Robertson (Cal. App. 4th Dist. Apr. 5, 1956)
[iv] Moxon v. County of Kern (Cal. App. 5th Dist. Apr. 2, 1965)

[v] Sneed v. Marysville Gas & Electric Co. (Cal. Sept. 20, 1906)

[vi] Griott v. Gamblin (Cal. App. 2d Dist. Aug. 8, 1961

[vii] Evarts v. Santa Barbara C. R. Co. (Cal. App. June 1, 1906)

[viii] Weiand v. Southern Pacific Co. (Cal. App. Sept. 11, 1939)

[ix] Wilson v. San Francisco (Cal. App. Sept. 4, 1951)

[x] Griffey v. Pacific E. R. Co. (Cal. App. July 11, 1922)

[xi] Zeller v. Reid (Cal. App. Apr. 26, 1940)

[xii] Peters v. Southern Pacific Co. (Cal. June 1, 1911)

© Copyright | Nakase Law Firm (2019)