In circumstances where a loved one’s death arises from the fault of another party, those closest to the deceased can contact a wrongful death lawyer in Los Angeles for help. These cases can be very complex in nature. Many believe that only direct family members can make a claim, though that is not always the case.
Real Parties in Interest
Claims must be made by someone who represents those surviving the deceased. The person who files the claim typically also administers the deceased’s will and handles their estate. That individual files on behalf of surviving members, also known as real parties of interest. In California, the real parties of interest include:
Direct Family Members
Compensation is awarded to spouses, domestic partners, and children to make up for lost income, companionship, and suffering.
The Next Surviving Family Member
If the deceased had no direct family members, the next person in succession would be entitled to the estate and compensation from a wrongful death claim. This can include anyone related to the deceased, such as parents or siblings. Essentially, the next surviving family member would be entitled.
Those Who Were Financially Dependent on the Deceased
Anyone who was financially dependent on the deceased would also be entitled. However, they would need to be able to prove that they were dependent. This can include any stepchildren and parents.