What is a wrongful death conviction? The wrong to and back from wrongful death convictions is arduous and long, but an experienced and skilled criminal defense attorney can help you navigate the choppy legal waters and help you secure the best possible outcome.
Tragedy can happen anywhere, anytime. Whether it’s the middle of the night or in the middle of a calm Sunday, when tragedy strikes, your life is changed forever. Windsor Troy works with families who have lost loved ones from car crashes, product malfunctions, and many other disasters. We’ll work to find you closure after a loved one’s death. We know that no judge or human has the power to turn back time and change what happened. But, compensation is available to help give you justice. At Windsor Troy, our defense lawyers are compassionate, caring, and professional. We work hard for survivors, and we relentlessly pursue justice.
Did you know that perjury/false accusations and official misconduct are the leading causes of wrongful convictions in death penalty cases?
What is Wrongful Death?
Wrongful death is a claim against a person who can be held liable for a death. These claims are brought in a civil action, commonly by family members, instead of by a prosecutor in criminal court.
At Windsor Troy, we’ve helped countless clients receive damages for the death of a loved one as a result of:
- Medical malpractice
- Birth injuries
- Failure to diagnosis
- Surgical error
- Nursing home abuse/neglect
- Car, trucking, and motorcycle accidents
- Head and spinal injuries
- Occupational hazards
- Product defects
- Dangerous premises
- Railroad accidents
What Leads to Wrongful Convictions?
The same factors drive wrongful convictions in capital cases and non-death penalty cases, including:
- Erroneous eyewitness identifications
- Inadequate legal defense
- False and coerced confessions
- False or misleading forensic evidence
- False accusations of perjury by witnesses who have been promised incentives, like lenient treatment, in exchange for their testimony.
The Difference Between a Wrongful Death Lawsuit and Murder
Some people confuse the differences between wrongful death lawsuits and murder. In the United States, there are two comprehensive categories of lawsuits: civil and criminal.
Civil cases involve lawsuits that individuals bring against each other. People are able to hire their own attorneys to bring civil lawsuits, and in most instances, civil lawsuits lead to payments of damages, not jail time.
Criminal lawsuits, on the other hand, are instituted by government prosecutors on the state and victim’s behalf.
Wrongful death is a civic lawsuit, and murder is a criminal lawsuit.
Elements of a Wrongful Death Case
In order to receive a wrongful death conviction, the following four elements must be proved:
- Negligence — It must be proved that the death was caused either in part or fully by the carelessness, recklessness, or by other negligent actions of the defendant.
- Breach of Duty — The plaintiff must also prove the defendant owed a duty to the victim. For example, school bus drives have the duty to drive safely and follow all traffic laws, especially in school zones, just as doctors have a duty to care for patients. The plaintiff has to prove how the defendant’s duty existed and that it was breached as a result of their negligence.
- Causation — In order to prove the defendant’s duty towards the victim was breached, the plaintiff must prove how the defendant’s negligence caused the death of their loved one.
- Damages — In order to prove a wrongful death conviction, the death must also generate quantifiable damages, including:
- Hospitalizations and other medical expenses
- Burial costs
- Funeral costs
- Income loss
- Loss of potential earnings
- Loss of protection, guidance, and inheritance
- The victim’s pain and suffering before death
Wrongful Death Conviction in California
If you’ve been convicted of wrongful death in California, you need a skilled criminal defense attorney to fight your wrongful death conviction. The staff at Windsor Troy are California’s leading attorneys in criminal defense, personal injury, and immigration cases. We go hand in hand with you at every stage of your legal process. Our legal team is dedicated to protecting your rights. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.