Laguna Beach Wrongful Death Lawyer

Laguna Beach Wrongful Death Attorney

Losing a loved one is never easy, but losing someone because of another party’s negligence or intentional misconduct can be especially distressing and frustrating. If you have any reason to believe that any party is responsible for causing the death of a loved one, it’s vital to consult an experienced Laguna Beach wrongful death attorney as soon as possible for the best chance of holding them accountable.

When one party injures another party in California and/or causes economic losses, the victim has grounds to pursue a personal injury claim against the party who harmed them. When the victim does not survive their injury, the victim’s family can pursue a wrongful death claim instead. While this type of civil case shares many procedural similarities with a personal injury claim, there are special rules that apply to wrongful death cases that you must be prepared to address.

Easton & Easton is a team of Laguna Beach personal injury attorneys with years of professional experience representing clients in difficult civil claims. We know the emotional distress your situation has caused your family and the uncertainty you may face concerning the financial effects of losing your loved one unexpectedly. Our firm has the resources, experience, and professional skills you need on your side to reach the best possible outcome for your case.

Laguna Beach Wrongful Death Lawyer

Benefits of Legal Representation in Your Wrongful Death Case

While it is technically possible to file a civil suit against another party without an attorney, doing so would be risky. You might think this could save you money on legal fees, but even when you account for the cost of hiring legal representation, hiring a Laguna Beach wrongful death attorney significantly increases the potential final value of your claim. You will be properly equipped to meet the legal challenges your case presents and can have easy access to responsive support when you need it throughout your case.

When you choose Easton & Easton to represent you in a Laguna Beach wrongful death suit, we begin handling your case by carefully reviewing the evidence and documentation that is currently available to you. We’ll help you assess the fault for the death and gather whatever evidence you need to prove who is responsible for your family’s damages. Many wrongful death plaintiffs are initially unaware of all of the compensation options available to them. When you have a reliable Laguna Beach wrongful death attorney handling your case, you are far more likely to maximize your family’s recovery from your losses.

Ultimately, legal counsel you can trust means you and your family can mourn your loved one with some reassurance knowing you can secure accountability for their death. At Easton & Easton, we have years of experience guiding clients through very challenging wrongful death claims, and we’re ready to put this experience to work in your case.

Commonly Reported Causes of Wrongful Death Case Claims in California

A wrongful death claim focuses on an act of negligence or intentional misconduct resulting in the death of a person. Fatal injuries can occur in many ways, often unexpectedly, but the determining factor as to whether you have grounds for a wrongful death case is if your loved one’s death occurred as a direct result of another party’s negligence or misconduct. Some of the most common causes of fatal injuries that lead to wrongful death claims in California include:

  • Motor vehicle accidents. If a negligent or reckless driver caused your loved one’s death in a fatal car accident, their auto insurance policy could offer some initial compensation for your family’s damages. However, you will likely need to proceed with a personal injury claim to secure full recovery from your family’s damages.
  • Product liability. If a product manufacturer’s unreasonably dangerous or defective product directly caused your loved one’s death, the company is likely liable for the wrongful death under California’s product liability statutes.
  • Premises liability. Slip and fall incidents on private property could implicate property owners as liable for injuries and deaths that lawful visitors sustain. All property owners have a duty to prevent injuries to lawful guests and visitors to their properties and to address known safety hazards as soon as they become apparent.
  • Interpersonal violence. Unfortunately, California has one of the highest statewide rates of violent crime in the country. If anyone caused your loved one’s death through an act of intentional harm or a criminal act, they face felony prosecution alongside civil liability for your family’s damages, and the defendant could spend many years in prison for their actions.
  • Medical malpractice. While thousands of Californians trust many medical providers to administer safe and effective medical treatment, medical negligence is a leading cause of accidental deaths and injuries throughout the country each year. If your family’s wrongful death claim pertains to medical malpractice, it is essential to find an attorney experienced with this type of case.

If you are unsure whether you have grounds to file a wrongful death claim, it is crucial that you speak with a Laguna Beach wrongful death attorney about your situation as soon as possible. The sooner you begin your claim filing process, the more likely you are to succeed in holding the defendant accountable for your loved one’s death.

Proven Case Results

We recently settled a wrongful death case for $2.75 million where the decedent was 55 years old with no wife or children, just two surviving parents in their 80s. The defendants’ insurance carrier initially expected to pay no more than $250,000 to settle the case of these 80-year-old parents who had no economic losses as a result of their son’s death. But because we demonstrated the unique bond these parents shared with their son by persuasively telling their family story, we were able to significantly increase the value of their case. After seeing how we would present this elderly couple’s case before a jury, the insurance company knew that taking the matter to trial could result in a substantially higher verdict based on our advocacy. Consequently, we were able to settle the case for an amount far in excess of our clients’ wildest dreams without them having to go through the pain and ordeal of a lengthy trial.

Compensation for Wrongful Death Lawsuit Plaintiffs

A wrongful death claim is similar to a personal injury claim in many ways. However, while a personal injury claim seeks compensation for damages the victim suffered because of the defendant’s actions, a wrongful death claim seeks compensation for the family’s losses. The damages available in most California wrongful death claims include:

  • Funeral expenses and the cost of burial for the deceased
  • Lost value of the household services the deceased provided to their family
  • Lost financial support the deceased provided, including the future income they could have earned had they survived
  • The family’s pain and suffering, including the loss of affection, care, companionship, and guidance provided by the deceased

You might also be able to include the legal fees and the costs associated with bringing the wrongful death claim included in your compensation. Your attorney could help you hold the defendant accountable for your legal fees, essentially meaning it would cost you nothing but time to bring your wrongful death suit against the defendant.

Your Laguna Beach wrongful death attorney is an invaluable asset when it comes to calculating the full scope of damages you can seek from the defendant. However, you may have grounds for further legal action depending on the details of your loved one’s death.

Success with your claim requires identifying the defendant and proving their actions directly resulted in your loved one’s death. Plaintiffs in California wrongful death claims must also be prepared to provide a full explanation of the financial effects of their loved ones’ unexpected deaths to ensure the defendants in their claims are held appropriately accountable.

Survival Actions and Wrongful Death Claims

While many people assume a wrongful death claim simply seeks compensation that the victim could have claimed had they survived, this is not exactly true. A personal injury suit seeks compensation for the victim’s damages, but a wrongful death claim seeks compensation for the surviving family’s loss. When the deceased’s estate incurred damages similar to those found in personal injury claims, such as medical expenses for treatment of their final injury and the pain and suffering they endured prior to the death, these damages can be included in a survival action filed in conjunction with a wrongful death claim.

A successful survival action can help your family hold the defendant accountable for the suffering the deceased experienced as a result of their actions and the economic impact of their final injury. Easton & Easton can help you determine whether your family has grounds to pursue a survival action with your wrongful death claim and assess whether doing so would suit your family’s needs and interests.

What to Expect From Laguna Beach Wrongful Death Attorneys

Facing a wrongful death can be incredibly difficult. Maintaining an objective focus on your family’s practical needs during this time can be challenging when you do not have legal representation you can trust. Easton & Easton has successfully represented clients throughout the Laguna Beach, CA area in a wide range of complex civil cases, including those pertaining to wrongful deaths. We understand the emotional weight of your situation and want to help you navigate the civil court system as efficiently as possible.

Our firm can help you gather any evidence needed to prove liability for the death in question. This may include physical evidence, eyewitness accounts, or even testimony from relevant expert witnesses. If your case involves criminal actions taken by a defendant, we can help you understand how a criminal case from the state could impact your family’s wrongful death case.

Ultimately, a wrongful death is something that no one wants to experience. However, when these incidents occur, affected families need to know their options for legal recourse and the value of legal representation in navigating these cases. The sooner you reach out to a Laguna Beach wrongful death attorney you can trust, the more likely you are to maximize your family’s recovery.

Orange County Wrongful Death FAQs

Q: How Do I Know If I Have Grounds for a Wrongful Death Claim?
A:
To succeed with a wrongful death suit, you must identify the party who caused the death in question and prove they were negligent or intentionally harmful in some way that led directly to the death. If any party recently caused the death of your loved one due to a failure to exercise reasonable care or due to their decision to willfully engage in harmful misconduct, you likely have grounds to pursue a wrongful death action against them.

Q: How Much Is My Wrongful Death Suit Worth?
A:
Money cannot replace your lost relative, but it can make adjusting to your new circumstances easier for you and your family. If you are concerned about the potential value of your civil action, your attorney can help you uncover every available avenue of compensation to maximize your recovery and provide an estimate of the total potential value of your case.

Q: What Happens If the Defendant Caused the Wrongful Death Intentionally?
A:
Many wrongful death claims pertain to acts of negligence or recklessness, but some manifest from acts of intentional violence and willful misconduct. In the event a defendant intentionally causes a wrongful death, or if the defendant intentionally harmed the victim fatally, the defendant is likely to face severe criminal penalties. They may face many years in prison, restitution to the victim’s family, and other substantial penalties based on the severity of their actions.

Q: How Long Does a Wrongful Death Case Take to Resolve?
A:
When a defendant is clearly responsible for a wrongful death, they typically prefer to settle the case as quickly as possible. However, any additional legal matters outside of the wrongful death claim could influence the time required to complete the case. For example, if the defendant faces criminal prosecution for their actions, their criminal court proceedings may influence the timetable of your wrongful death claim. Your attorney can provide an estimate of your case’s most likely timeline.

Q: Is It Worth Hiring a Laguna Beach Wrongful Death Attorney?
A:
Legal counsel is an invaluable asset when you are facing any type of civil claim for damages, especially one as complex and emotionally charged as a wrongful death claim. Your attorney’s advice can help you make informed decisions throughout your case, significantly improve your chances of holding the defendant accountable for their actions, and improve the overall quality of your case award. Even when you take the cost of hiring your attorney into account, their representation can make a tremendous difference in the final value of your claim.

Easton & Easton is a team of experienced attorneys ready to provide the compassionate and responsive legal counsel you need for your wrongful death claim in Laguna Beach. We understand the emotional weight of your situation and want to provide the guidance and support you need to approach your civil court proceedings with clarity and confidence. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation with a Laguna Beach wrongful death attorney you can trust with your case.

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Firm Awards

The superior client service Easton & Easton provides has earned the firm an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.

Easton & Easton is honored to have been chosen anew each year since 2014 by U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers as one of the "Best Law Firms" for the Southern California Metro Area.

Easton & Easton is honored to have been chosen by the LA Times Reader's Choice Poll as "The Best Personal Injury Law Firm in Orange County" for 2018.

Doug and Brian Easton have been selected as Top 100 Trial Lawyers for California each year since 2014 — honors given to less than 1% of attorneys.

Doug and Matt Easton have each been chosen as one of The Best Lawyers in America for Plaintiff's Personal Injury Litigation. Best Lawyers lists attorneys who have earned selection through exemplary legal work that attracts the notice of their colleagues. Lawyers cannot buy their way onto this list.

Brian and Matt Easton were recently honored for their efforts in securing a $1,850,000 verdict for a client in 2016, which was selected as one of the Top 50 Personal Injury Verdicts in California by TopVerdict.com.

Doug and Brian have each been selected by Super Lawyers, an honor given to less than 5% of attorneys. Matt Easton has been selected among Super Lawyers' Up-and-Coming Top 25 in Orange County and Top 100 in Southern Califonia, an honor given to less than 1% of attorneys under 40 years old.

Easton & Easton is honored to have been chosen as one of the "10 Best Personal Injury Law Firms” in all of Southern California" each year Since 2015 based on client satisfaction — one of the highest honors we could ever hope to achieve.

Easton & Easton received the “People Love Us On Yelp” award in 2016 due to the exceptional client satisfaction reviews given by our clients over the years.

Doug and Matt Easton have each been featured as Premier 100 Trial Attorneys for California since 2015 — honors given to less than 1% of attorneys.

Brian and Matt Easton have each earned lifetime appointment to the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum — The Top Trial Lawyers in AmericaTM through the results achieved for their clients. This is an honor given to less than 1% of attorneys in the United States.

Doug Easton has held the “AV Preeminent” Rating for over 30 years and Matt Easton received this prestigious distinction in 2015. The "AV Preeminent" rating is the highest possible rating for both legal ability and ethical standards, and is based on the legal profession’s oldest peer review rating system, dating back to 1887.

Doug, Brian, and Matt Easton have all been chosen as one of the "10 Best" Personal Injury Attorneys in Southern California each year since 2015 based on client satisfaction, an honor given to less than 1% of personal injury attorneys - and Easton & Easton houses three of them.

Brian Easton was selected to the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) in 2015. ABOTA is one of the most premier associations of trial attorneys and judges, requiring a certain number of jury trials as lead counsel and approval by a majority vote of the ABOTA board.

Matt Easton has been selected each year since 2014 as one of the Top 40 Trial Lawyers Under 40 for California by The National Trial Lawyers — an honor given to less than 1% of attorneys.

Doug and Matt Easton have each been chosen as one of The Best Lawyers in America for Plaintiff's Personal Injury Litigation. Best Lawyers lists attorneys who have earned selection through exemplary legal work that attracts the notice of their colleagues. Lawyers cannot buy their way onto this list.

Both Doug and Matt Easton have been selected as Top Personal Injury Attorneys by Avvo with scores of 10 out of 10 based on their skill, experience, results, peer evaluations, and client reviews.

Matt Easton has been selected as one of the Top 10 Personal Injury Attorneys Under 40 in California for 2015 by the National Association of Personal Injury Attorneys — an honor given to less than 1% of personal injury attorneys under the age of 40.

Doug, Brian, and Matt Easton have all been selected by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel among the Nation's Top One Percent of Attorneys each year since 2017.

Orange County Personal Injury Lawyer | Costa Mesa Auto Accident Attorney | Catastrophic Injuries

“We look for the human story behind every injury or wrongful death. We prepare our cases for trial; reaching out to the jury with the most compelling evidence possible for the best verdict possible. Insurance companies know this and come to the table prepared to negotiate in good faith. Call us to see how we can turn your story into fair compensation.”

Partner W. Douglas Easton

What Our
CLIENTS SAY

Coming out of my first auto accident as an adult, a very difficult and scary time to navigate and understand, I was so incredibly thankful to have been put in contact with Easton & Easton. I honestly was lost with how to handle paperwork, doctors, medical costs and what next steps were, and from the moment I spoke with Travis Easton and my case manager Katie, my mind was put at ease. They have made the entire process stress free for me as I recovered, and I am so grateful for them and their genuine care for my case. Communication from the start has been fantastic, especially making clear what my expectations for the entire process would look like, and I truly believe they have my best interest at heart. 100% I would recommend their firm for anyone that is needing representation!

Sara McClelland

My experience with Easton & Easton has been amazing! Gabriel Mendoza and my case manager Katie have been so helpful and taken so much stress off my plate. They’ve been super informative and honest and given me very clear expectations. They’ve taken such a terrible experience (my accident) and eased my mind about the outcome. I can’t thank them enough!!

Caila Dean

Ive used them twice and never been disappointed

Lisa Bluemel

The Easton & Easton Law Firm is amazing! The entire team is very helpful and caring. They were always there to answer all my questions. They directed me through the entire process and stayed with me every step of the way. This team is outstanding and were wonderful to work with. Because of the tremendous effort they put on my case they were able to win my difficult personal injury case. I couldn’t have asked for a better law firm to handle my case. They are the Best! Thank you for your patience, professionalism, & guidance! I definitely recommend this firm to handle your case. They go out of their way to fight for your rights. THANK YOU…

Sofia Sanchez

I could not be more pleased with the services provided by the Law Offices of W. Douglas Easton. The senior partner Mr. Easton took the time to meet with me and my wife while I was still in the hospital, where he gave my family hope that there was light at the end of a very long, and very dark tunnel. Matt Easton then worked my case, and because of his dedication, experience and expertise I received a settlement that was larger than I EVER thought possible. It was truly astounding! Matt and the entire team at Easton & Easton looked out for me throughout my recovery, and in the end they gave me my life back. Five stars is not enough. Thanks Matt! Thanks Easton & Easton!

Dan Campbell

Brian and everyone at Easton and Easton are simply the BEST at what they do. Brian is thorough, easy to talk to, and truly cares about his clients. If you want a family of attorneys with perseverance and determination to fight for you, give Easton and Easton a call. I am glad I did.

Kyle Keith

What an amazing law firm, talk about going above and beyond to make such a painful experience go so well. I have referred a co-worker and a family member to them as well and everyone had such a great experience as I had.

Logan Ross

I can’t say enough amazing things about my experience with Travis Easton at Easton & Easton. Travis and his entire team (Katie, Amy, Dee, Michelle, & Araceli) are phenomenal. It provided me a lot of comfort to know I was being so well taken care of. I was especially impressed that every document for the case was perfectly written and specific to me. Nothing was generic, which shows the level of care and attention they put into each individual case. I had such a great experience and would highly recommend Travis Easton and his firm to anyone going through a personal injury. Travis took a bad situation and made the best of it for me. Thank you again, I’m forever grateful!!

-Allee

Ashlee A.

Retaining Easton and Easton was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made! From the initial consultation to our final meeting, they were nothing short of exceptional. I was forced to retain their services after firing my previous attorney for not handling the case properly. I dealt with Gabriel and Brian (partner) exclusively throughout the case. They did as promised and were great communicators throughout the entire process. I will recommend them to anyone I know going through a personal injury case. They were ultimately able to untangle the mess caused by my previous lawyer and get a result that I was extremely happy with. Their staff is exceptional as well and provided top notch customer service. Amera was also extremely helpful and easy to deal with as well.

Jeffrey N.

I was in a pretty bad car accident and decided to have Easton & Easton represent me, Travis Easton to be specific. Travis Easton and his paralegal made the whole process effortless. They were so understanding and helpful! The entire thing was a gigantic mess, yet Travis managed to make it run like clockwork. I would HIGHLY recommend Easton & Easton! If you are ever in need of a personal defense attorney Easton & Easton is the firm to represent you!

Mark B.

They are the best law firm in Orange County period. Choosing them to represent me was the best decision of my life.
My life changed in a matter of seconds after a catastrophic spinal cord injury that left me disabled. Brian Easton and his team worked on my case non stop for 3 years and provided me the justice I deserved. I couldn’t have been more content.
I was treated with utmost respect and I felt like I was being represented by a close family member. The responses to my questions were quick and clear. What E & E has done for me is phenomenal.
My sincere thanks to Brian, Matt, Travis, Doug, Gabriel and Amera. They are what they are because of their dedication to provide high quality and professional service to their clients.

Vamsi P.

Brian Easton and his team, Gabe Mendoza and Amera Hajali, helped me during a very difficult time in my life. I had a significant injury from a car accident, and wound up seeking out Easton & Easton when I was having difficulties getting help from my doctors. The Easton team took a lot of stress off of me while acting as my advocates to help me get the care I needed, and saw my case all the way through to a healthy settlement.

They are the BEST!

Jennifer P.

I have nothing but good things to say about Easton and Easton. Brian handled my case professionally and communicated with me effectively throughout the process. He made sure that the process was effortless and as hands free as possible. This was super important for my busy schedule. I highly recommend Easton and Easton if you are ever found in a situation that you need an attorney.

Claudia C.

I would highly recommend Easton & Easton.
I was rear ended on my home and pushed into a semi-truck. I was not sure how to go about even using an attorney.
Brian, Gab and Amera were so good about helping me thru the process and representing me.
I was able to concentrate on getting myself better knowing they had my back, taking care of the details and keeping me informed along the way

Linda M.

The best Law firm by far. I would highly recommend Easton & Easton, LLP and ask for Gabriel Mendoza and staff. He and his colleagues did and exceptional service. Thank you for everything. Job well done!

Ericka P.

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