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Santa Rosa Bicycle Accident With Wrongful Death

When bicycles and vehicles collide on the road, it is most often the cyclist who sustains the worst injuries. In far too many of these accidents in Santa Rosa, the crash is fatal for the cyclist. In these cases, the surviving family members often choose to file a Santa Rosa bicycle accident with wrongful death lawsuit. This type of lawsuit can provide the cyclist’s loved ones with financial compensation. More importantly, though, it can hold at-fault parties responsible for their actions.

Any time family members wish to file a lawsuit for a wrongful death after a bicycle accident, they need to speak to a Santa Rose bicycle accident attorney. An attorney will fight to ensure the rights of family members are upheld in court, and that they receive the full amount of compensation to which they are entitled.

What is a Wrongful Death in Santa Rosa?

According to California law, a wrongful death is any death caused by the reckless or careless actions of another person. Surviving spouses, children, parents, or anyone who will benefit from the estate can file a wrongful death claim in Santa Rosa.

The burden of proof in any civil lawsuit is on the plaintiff. This means that the person filing the lawsuit must prove that another person was at fault. In a Santa Rosa bicycle accident with wrongful death, police reports, phone records, and eyewitness testimony are just a few ways to prove someone’s fault.

Damages Available in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

A wrongful death lawsuit is intended to provide surviving family members with compensation for any expenses related to the death. The types of compensation available are similar to those that would have been available in a personal injury claim if the deceased had survived the accident. There are some differences, though. For example, a wrongful death lawsuit can provide compensation for funeral and burial expenses, while those are not applicable in a personal injury lawsuit.

The most common types of compensation sought in a Santa Rosa bicycle accident with wrongful death lawsuit are:

  • Mental and emotional distress
  • Funeral and burial expenses
  • Medical expenses incurred before the deceased passed away
  • Loss of income
  • Loss of household services, such as childcare
  • Loss of companionship, support, and guidance
  • Loss of inheritance

A Santa Rosa bicycle accident lawyer can help families determine what types of compensation are available after reviewing a specific case.

Defense to Santa Rosa Bicycle Accident With Wrongful Death

No one wants the courts to find them at fault for a bicycle accident, particularly one that is fatal for the cyclist. Due to this, at-fault parties will try to shift at least some of the blame onto the cyclist. In California, this is known as comparative fault. Under the comparative fault rule, when an accident victim even partially contributes to an accident that caused his or her injuries, the courts will assign the victim a percentage of fault. If the victim is then awarded compensation, it will be reduced by that same percentage of fault.

Motorists, those who are typically at fault for a fatal bicycle accident, will use a number of tactics to shift blame onto the cyclist. These include claiming the cyclist was not paying attention, was under the influence, or was not following traffic laws. This is another reason it is so important for surviving family members wishing to file a lawsuit to retain the services of an experienced attorney. Attorneys are already familiar with this strategy, and will provide evidence to refute these claims in court.

Get the Compensation You Deserve With the Help of a Santa Rosa Wrongful Death Lawyer

If you have lost someone to a fatal bicycle accident, you need the help of an experienced wrongful death lawyer in Santa Rosa. At Willoughby Brod, LLP, we have the experience necessary to pursue wrongful death claims and get surviving loved ones the compensation they deserve. Contact us at (800) 427-7020 for your free case evaluation and learn more about how we can help you and your family through this extremely difficult time.

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