Wrongful Death

Please accept our condolences on the loss of your loved one.  We know what you are going through. Phil Ganong has personally experienced such losses and understands the depth of the pain and grief you may be experiencing. 

As painful as losing a loved one is, we understand that the pain is multiplied when their death was caused by the negligence, carelessness, or wrongdoing of another. You feel as if you could have – or should have – done something. That you could have stopped it. 

In almost every case of wrongful death we have seen, family and loved ones are not at fault and could not have done anything to change the outcome. More than likely, that is true in your situation, too.

Couple consoling each other at a funeral
While no amount of money can compensate for your loss, it can help ease your financial burden.

What Ganong Law  Can Do for You

People like you who have lost a parent, spouse, domestic partner, or child because of someone else’s carelessness, negligence, or wrongdoing come to Ganong Law for three reasons:

  • To get their questions answered. Often you have questions that no one will answer. A Ganong Law a wrongful death attorney investigates. We get documents, interview witnesses, and talk to experts. We reconstruct the situation to see if carelessness, negligence, or wrongdoing resulted in your loved one's wrongful death.
  • To learn about how to hold the wrongdoer accountable for their loved one's wrongful death.
  • To stop the wrongdoer from continuing their actions and putting others at risk.

Your Financial Security is at Risk

We know money can’t begin to compensate you for the loss of your loved one. But your entire financial situation could be shaken if your loved one was the family’s breadwinner or contributed to the household in other ways. 

Compensation for a wrongful death could give you and your family the financial security you need. It could: 

As a wrongful death attorney, Phil Ganong can help you make sense of the legal and financial ramifications of your loss. We are on your team. We know how to fight the wrongdoer using the legal system to make sure that you are heard.

The question of who has the right to bring a wrongful death lawsuit is controlled by statute and can be more complicated than it appears.

Causes of Wrongful Death

Wrongful death is the result of a person’s or a corporation’s carelessness, negligence, or wrongdoing. Possible causes of your loved ones wrongful death are a:

  • Motor Vehicle Accident
  • Truck Accident
  • Construction Accident
  • Defective Product
  • Work-related Injuries 
  • Medical Malpractice 
  • Medication Errors 
  • Animal Attack
  • Negligent Caretaking (such as at a day-care, a public swimming pool, a babysitting service, or summer camp) 
  • Assault and battery

The Cost of a Wrongful Death Lawyer

Your Ganong Law wrongful death attorney understands how difficult this time is for you. When Ganong Law accepts your case, you pay nothing until the case is resolved in your favor.  This is called taking a case on a contingency basis. 

Time Is Limited 

We know it is hard, but you must contact a wrongful death attorney at Ganong Law as soon as possible. 

One reason is that there are statutes of limitation (deadlines) by which time you must file the wrongful death lawsuit.

If you miss the statute of limitations (deadline), then you are giving up your rights forever to file a wrongful death lawsuit for the loss of your son, daughter, father, mother, husband, wife, or domestic partner. 

Another reason to act quickly is so your Ganong Law wrongful death attorney can begin an investigation. We need to gather documents before they are lost or destroyed and talk to witnesses before they forget or disappear. 

Compensation for a wrongful death can give you and your family the financial security you need.

All of this allows your wrongful death attorney to determine all the parties who may have been liable for the loss of your loved one.

Schedule Your Free Consultation

For a free, no-obligation consultation, contact a wrongful death attorney at Ganong Law. Let us help.

Wrongful Death Q&A

Q: Who is entitled to bring a wrongful death lawsuit?

A: If the person was married or in a domestic partnership at the time of death, the spouse or domestic partner may bring a wrongful death lawsuit. All heirs at law must be joined into the lawsuit. Heirs that don’t want to participate must be joined as defendants until the court dismisses them.

If your loved one had children, the children can bring a wrongful death lawsuit. If your loved one was married but had no children, then the parents may bring a wrongful death lawsuit.

If a child under the age of 18 years old died, the parents may bring a wrongful death lawsuit.

However, it is important to speak to a wrongful death attorney because who has the right to bring a wrongful death lawsuit is controlled by statute and can be more complicated than it appears.

Q: How are damages awarded if there are multiple heirs?

A: If the case goes to trial the jury awards one amount to the entire family. The judge then divides up the award basing his decision on a number of factors, such as the financial dependence each heir had on the decedent and the closeness of their relationship.

If the case settles, then the heirs divide up the settlement themselves. They can ask for assistance from the judge, arbitrator, mediator, or their wrongful death attorney.

Q: Do the heirs have to use the same attorney?

A: No, but there are pluses and minuses to this technique. For instance, if some heirs do not get along with others, using different attorneys could reduce the hostility.

However, using different attorneys means that more money will be used to pay court costs and attorney fees, leaving the actual settlement monies less for each heir.

Q: My father was killed in a car accident. Though the car accident was not his fault, he was found partially responsible for the accident. Does this mean we do not have a wrongful death case?

A: You may still be able to bring a wrongful death lawsuit. California recognizes comparative negligence. This means that someone can be partially responsible (or liable) for an accident but still recover a portion of the damages to which they are entitled.

For instance, if you were awarded $2,000,000 but your father was liable for 50% of the accident, you would be entitled to $1,000,000.

The laws are complicated. The best way to know if you are entitled to bring a wrongful death lawsuit is to talk with a wrongful death attorney.

Seek Legal Assistance Now

For a free, no-obligation consultation, contact a wrongful death attorney at Ganong Law.

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Bakersfield Office

930 Truxtun Ave
Ste 102
Bakersfield, CA 93301

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Saturday and Sunday available by appointment only