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Wrongful Death

San Jose Wrongful Death Lawyer

Have You Lost a Loved One in an Avoidable Accident?

The sudden and unexpected loss of a loved one is one of the most difficult experiences that one can go through in life. Wrongful death accidents are emotionally traumatizing for the family of the victim, and the repercussions of losing a loved one in a needless accident can linger for years. The caring legal team at Habbas & Associates understands the devastating nature of wrongful death accidents and we have seen the financial strain that families can go through after the death of the family's main financial provider.

With more than 200 years of legal experience, our law firm represents families and individuals who have lost their beloved family members in tragic and preventable accidents. We provide caring, reliable legal counsel and support for our clients so that they can recover the compensation they need to stay financially afloat. When you call a San Jose wrongful death attorney at our firm, you will immediately begin to receive the compassionate legal support you deserve.

Contact Habbas & Associates today to schedule a free consultation!

Understanding Wrongful Death Claims in California

Wrongful death is defined by the law as a death caused by the negligence or misconduct of another person or company. If your loved one was killed because of the negligent or reckless actions of another, you may be entitled to seek compensation under the law.

In California, to succeed in a wrongful death lawsuit, certain elements need to be proven. Here are the key components typically required:

  1. Duty of Care: You must establish that the defendant owed a duty of care to the deceased. For instance, in a car accident, all drivers owe a duty of care to others on the road to drive safely.
  2. Breach of Duty: Show that the defendant breached that duty of care. This means they failed to act reasonably or appropriately, causing harm. For instance, if a driver ran a red light and caused the accident, they breached their duty.
  3. Causation: Prove that the defendant's breach of duty directly caused the death. There must be a clear link between the defendant's actions or negligence and the death.
  4. Damages: Demonstrate the losses suffered as a result of the death. This includes both economic damages (like medical bills, funeral expenses, lost wages, etc.) and non-economic damages (such as pain and suffering, loss of companionship, etc.).

Collect and present evidence supporting your claims. This may include eyewitness testimonies, expert opinions, accident reports, medical records, etc.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in California?

In California, parties eligible to file a wrongful death claim are specified under the California Code of Civil Procedure Section 377.60. The following parties typically have the legal standing to bring forth a wrongful death lawsuit:

  1. Spouse or Domestic Partner: The surviving spouse or domestic partner of the deceased holds the primary right to file a wrongful death claim.
  2. Children: Natural or adopted children of the deceased can file a wrongful death claim. This includes minors and adult children.
  3. Grandchildren: Grandchildren can file a wrongful death claim if their parent (the child of the deceased) is also deceased.
  4. Other Dependents: Any other individuals who were financially dependent on the deceased, such as stepchildren or minors for whom the deceased was the guardian providing at least 50% of financial support, may also have the right to file a claim.
  5. Putative Spouse and Putative Children: A putative spouse (one who believed in good faith that they were legally married to the deceased) and the putative spouse's children who were dependent on the deceased may have the right to file.
  6. Parents: Biological or adoptive parents of the deceased can file a wrongful death claim if they were dependent on the deceased for financial support.
  7. Personal Representative: If no immediate family members or eligible parties come forward to file a claim, the personal representative of the deceased's estate may file a wrongful death action on behalf of the estate.

Common Causes of Wrongful Death

While there are a variety of accidents that can lead to the death of a loved one, some of the most common include:

Our firm has extensive experience in the recovering compensation under personal injury law, and we will fight for you so that you can receive the maximum amount of compensation available. At Habbas & Associates, we are passionate about seeing our clients get through a trying time in their life, and we work tirelessly so that they can rest free from financial worry.

Here's how we can help:

  • Legal Expertise and Guidance: We possess deep knowledge and experience in California's wrongful death laws. Our expertise helps navigate complex legal procedures, ensuring every aspect of your case is handled with precision.
  • Investigation and Evidence Gathering: We conduct thorough investigations, gathering evidence to support your claim. This includes obtaining witness statements, analyzing accident reports, and collaborating with experts to strengthen your case.
  • Maximizing Compensation: We fight to maximize the compensation you deserve. Our team evaluates all damages, including financial losses, emotional suffering, and future impacts, to ensure you receive rightful compensation.
  • Navigating Complex Legal Procedures: We handle all legal procedures and paperwork on your behalf. From filing the claim within the statute of limitations to representing you in court, we manage the complexities while you focus on healing.
  • Emotional Support and Compassion: Beyond legal expertise, we offer compassionate support. Our team understands the emotional toll of losing a loved one and provides guidance and support throughout the legal process.
  • Negotiation Skills: We possess strong negotiation skills. Our aim is to reach a fair settlement with insurance companies or opposing parties. If necessary, we are prepared to litigate aggressively to secure your rights in court.
  • Experience Handling Similar Cases: We have a successful track record handling wrongful death cases in San Jose. Our experience equips us to anticipate challenges and strategize effectively for the best possible outcome.
  • Peace of Mind: By entrusting us with your case, you gain peace of mind knowing that we are tirelessly advocating for your best interests, seeking justice for your loved one, and working towards securing the compensation you deserve.
Hear It From Our CLients.


  • "She made the whole process smooth and simple. She fought to get me what I deserved when a drunk driver crashed into me. I will recommend her and the team at Habbas and Associates to everyone I know!"
    Grace T.
  • They do everything possible to help you get through tough times.

    Daniel L.
  • "We are extremely happy with the seamless experience that they provided. All in all, you'd wish you never have to run into any injury situations but if you do then Habbas law firm is the place to go."
    Neil T.
  • "I’m so glad I found this law firm and extremely happy with the results. Very highly recommended them to family and friends. If you or a loved one needs help, don’t hesitate to call them!"
    AJ B.
  • "My case was settled at mediation for approximately $950,000.00 within a short time after a lawsuit was filed. I can't say enough about how much Mr. Habbas and his firm care about their clients. I will always refer anyone I know to them."
    Roberta S.

Wrongful Death Statute of Limitations in California

According to California Code of Civil Procedure 335.1, a person must file a wrongful death claim within two years of the death of an individual that was "caused by the wrongful act or neglect of another." Two years can pass quicker than you realize, therefore, it is important to contact a wrongful death attorney as soon as possible to begin building your case.

Contact a wrongful death lawyer at Habbas & Associates today for a free consultation! We serve northern California clients from six convenient office locations in San Jose, Modesto, Sacramento, San Francisco, Oakland, and Rocklin.

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