Wrongful deaths are a tragedy, but they are especially heartbreaking when they happen while a person is in the custody of the state. Each year, hundreds of people die while in police custody or jail.
Some of these deaths are due to natural causes, but others are preventable and caused by medical negligence or malpractice. In these cases, the families of the deceased may be able to seek compensation through a wrongful death settlement.
What is Wrongful Death?
In California, wrongful death settlements are determined based on several factors. First and foremost, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant (usually a government agency or contracted agency) was responsible for the death of their loved one.
In wrongful jail/in-custody death cases, this often means proving that the defendant was negligent or deliberately indifferent to the deceased’s needs.
How is Wrongful Death Determined?
Determining a wrongful death settlement for a jail/in-custody death requires a thorough investigation of the incident that led to the death. Law enforcement officials, medical examiners, and other relevant parties must provide details of the incident to assess the extent of negligence or wrongdoing caused by the responsible parties.
Investigations must assess several factors, including whether the jail staff provided adequate medical care to the victim, whether the jail staff followed proper protocols during the victim’s arrest and processing, and how the misconduct contributed to the victim’s death.
Increase in Wrongful Death Cases Due to Medical Care
In recent years, there has been a concerning trend in prisons across the United States – an increase in wrongful deaths due to substandard medical care. The Constitution grants inmates the right to adequate medical care, but this right is often not met.
Lack of funding, understaffing of medical professionals, and inadequate training are just a few reasons behind this alarming trend. Inmates with chronic conditions such as diabetes or heart disease are often not given the appropriate medication or treatment, leading to life-threatening complications.
The issue of inadequate medical care in prisons not only violates the inmates’ constitutional rights but also raises serious ethical questions about the value we place on human life.
Seeking Justice Through Financial Compensation
The victim’s age is particularly significant as it can determine the projected value of the victim’s life and the expected contribution they would have made to their family.
If the victim had dependents, such as children or elderly relatives, the settlement amount would also depend on the victim’s earning capacity and the expected financial support they would have provided.
Finally, it is worth noting that wrongful death settlement resolutions in California can take a long time. Government agencies often have teams of lawyers working on these cases, which can complicate the legal process. Plaintiffs in these cases should be prepared for a lengthy legal battle.
Another critical factor to consider in wrongful death settlements is the emotional impact on the family members left behind.
Placing a dollar figure on losing a loved one is always difficult in the court system. Still, when the death is preventable and caused by negligence, the emotional toll can be even more significant.
Wrongful jail/in-custody deaths are tragic and preventable occurrences, but families can seek justice through wrongful death settlements.
While the legal process can be lengthy, families should not hesitate to seek compensation for their loved one’s death caused by negligence or malpractice. After all, financial compensation may not take away the heartache and pain, but it can help bring closure and provide some relief to the family members left behind.
Wrongful Death in Prison/Jail Attorney Los Angeles
We at Sehat Law Firm are experienced civil rights attorneys tackling the often-confusing legal prison/police legal system to find justice for your loved ones! We want to hear your case, so please contact us now if you believe your loved one’s death was due to jail negligence. A settlement depends on so many varying factors so connecting with experienced attorneys in this area is crucial. You can view our verdicts for jail death/wrongful death settlements here.