Victorville Wrongful Death Statute of Limitations

After losing your loved one in a preventable accident or incident, you are probably feeling overwhelming sadness and grief. You might also be extremely angry because you know that your loved one’s death only occurred because someone else made a careless mistake. In such circumstances, you might have the right to seek justice for your loved one’s untimely and preventable loss in a wrongful death suit.

However, you must be aware of the Victorville wrongful death statute of limitations that could interfere with your ability to pursue a claim. A qualified local lawyer could guide you through the legal process and ensure you comply with all relevant deadlines.

Understanding Wrongful Death Lawsuits

Wrongful death lawsuits help surviving family members seek accountability for their beloved family member’s untimely and avoidable loss. When someone loses their loved one in a preventable accident or incident, they might be able to pursue a wrongful death claim, which is a civil claim. Unlike in a criminal prosecution—where the wrongdoer could face jail time if convicted—a successful resolution of a wrongful death suit results in a court ordering the wrongdoer to pay compensation to the decedent’s surviving family members. Criminal convictions require a jury to find guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, but civil wrongful death suits require a lesser burden of proof. Consequently, even if a criminal court finds a defendant not guilty, a grieving family might still be able to seek justice against that defendant because the family only needs to prove that it is more likely than not that the defendant’s actions caused the deceased person’s death.

A knowledgeable Victorville attorney could review the circumstances of a decedent’s death to see if there are viable grounds to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit, keeping in mind the relevant statute of limitations. They could investigate to determine the cause and identify if anyone else bears potential legal responsibility.

Relevant Statutes of Limitations Regarding Wrongful Deaths

The statute of limitations is the mandatory time period in which someone has to bring a legal claim.

General Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations for wrongful deaths in the Victorville area is generally two years, which means that surviving family members have until two years after a decedent’s death to bring a claim. However, there are some exceptions.

Medical Malpractice Discovery Rule

If the decedent died because of a medical mistake, different rules could apply if the family does not learn that the death occurred because of medical malpractice until some time has passed. The discovery rule gives families additional time to file suit. They generally have up to one year until after they discover the death occurred due to medical malpractice.

Toll on Statute of Limitations for a Minor

In addition, if a minor loses a parent, they have until two years after their 18th birthday to bring a claim.

Seasoned local attorneys could review the facts to determine which deadline is appropriate.

Contact a Victorville Attorney Who Is Familiar With the Wrongful Death Statutes of Limitations

Deciding to sue someone for wrongful death can be a difficult process. Unfortunately, you do not have unlimited time to come to this decision because of the relevant Victorville wrongful death statute of limitations.

Contact a compassionate lawyer at Walter Clark Legal Group who could stand up for your rights and help you understand your legal options.

Walter Clark Legal Group

Walter Clark Legal Group