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Wrongful Death of a Child in California

Dec 13, 2022 | Los Angeles Information

In California, if a parent passes away due to someone else’s negligence, their kid may sue for compensation for the loss of their love, support, care, and income. When a child dies as a consequence of wrongful death, the parents’ recompense has limits to compensate for the loss of love and affection, additional expenditures, and the child’s financial benefit.

Undoubtedly, much of this investigation involves speculation. The younger the kid was when they died, the more difficult it is to pinpoint financial loss or suffering to the parents. The jury may evaluate the child’s potential contribution to both parents’ maintenance. But, this cannot be based only on educated assumptions or speculative estimates. Jurors commonly utilize life expectancy figures as a starting point for such complex computations. California courts have historically upheld lesser damages for child fatalities. However, court rules against jury conjecture do not always limit parents to tiny recoveries in this aspect. A wrongful death lawsuit seeks compensation for damages caused by the death of a family member, in this case, a child.

What Should a Parent Do in the Wrongful Death of a Child?

Some things that parents can do to receive compensation for the death of their child:

  • Direct expenses such as hospital and medical costs as well as funeral expenses;
  • The amount that the deceased kid would have made throughout his or her lifetime as a result of the loss of future earning potential;
  • Loss of consortium, including the loss of community, society, and the financial support provided by the deceased child. The loss of any benefits to which the dead child is entitled under any trust, pension, or retirement program is also included.

Some losses are simple to calculate, such as the amount of immediate medical and funeral expenditures. Other damages, such as the right compensation for a loss of companionship, are harder to define and estimate. Damage calculation is a complicated procedure that takes into account several aspects and necessitates legal study.

What are Those Factors?

Among the factors to consider are:

  • The parent’s and the deceased child’s relationship. This is frequently simple to prove as a parent initiating a wrongful death lawsuit. In certain states, however, it is now necessary to prove that a parent has continuously paid for the child’s support. This was done to prohibit a parent who provided little to no financial assistance to the kid during his or her life from gaining financially from the child’s death. California has not yet enacted this extra requirement. As a result, the larger the harm, the closer the bond between the child and parent. This can be proved by sharing vacations, holidays, birthdays, photographs, home films, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day cards, and so on.
  • how reliant the deceased child was on the parent. If the youngster had helped the parent somehow, then this would be appropriate. Financial experts consult to help with this component’s determination. However, juries and courts will take into account the health, age, and circumstances of persons who are claiming financial damages.
  • Human life specialists may be able to determine the dead infant’s expected lifespan.
  • The expected wages and employment advantages of the deceased kid are frequently difficult to estimate. A child has often not started their chosen job; therefore,
  • The extent of comparative fault, if any, that the deceased child may have had. The apportionment of fault theory is recognizable under California law, which allows case value reductions depending on the proportion of any fault that the dead kid may have contributed to the accident that ended in death.

Contact A Los Angeles Attorney Today

No amount of money will compensate for the loss of a child. Nonetheless, if a child in your family has died as a result of another’s carelessness or wrongful behavior in California, call KAASS LAW at 310-933-5171. We also specialize in a number of other cases. More information may be found here.