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San Francisco Wrongful Death Attorneys

Compassionate Counsel for Grieving Families

When another party’s negligence causes a death, the surviving family members may be able to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit to hold the at-fault party (or parties) accountable. A successful wrongful death claim may result in compensation for the harm caused, including, funeral and burial expenses, the loss of love, society, protection, and companionship, as well as lost income. As of January 1, 2022, California allows for recovery of the compensation the decedent would have been entitled to for pain and suffering caused by the negligent party.

A wrongful death lawsuit also forces the at-fault party (or parties) to confront any negligence that may have contributed to the incident, which will help prevent future incidents from happening again.

Retaining an experienced San Francisco wrongful death lawyer is the best way for the surviving family to pursue a successful claim and receive maximum compensation owed under the law. At Wisner Baum, we understand that participating in a lawsuit may be the last thing you want to do when you are grieving, which is why we work hard to make it as easy as possible for you. We take a compassionate approach to your needs but an aggressive approach to advocating for you against any at-fault party.

Contact Wisner Baum online to schedule a free consultation with a San Francisco wrongful death attorney.

Types of Wrongful Death Cases

When an individual or company causes the death of another person through an intentional or unintentional wrongful act, the decedent is considered to have suffered a “wrongful death.” When choosing legal representation, it is essential to look for attorneys skilled in wrongful death law and the type of accident/incident at the center of your case.

Wisner Baum’s team of trial lawyers has represented clients in personal injury and wrongful death claims across a wide variety of practice areas, including:

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

Generally speaking, the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit belongs to the closest relative (or relatives) of the decedent but these laws vary in each state:

  • Spouse or domestic partner
  • Children
  • Dependent step-children
  • Minor(s) living with the decedent for six months or more
  • Dependent parents

If none of these people can file suit, the right to file moves to:

  • Parents
  • Siblings and their children
  • Grandparents

If you believe you have grounds for a case, even if you are unsure, consult with a San Francisco wrongful death lawyer to learn more about your legal rights. Acting quickly to pursue a case helps ensure that key pieces of evidence are preserved and that important information to bolster your case is not lost.

Furthermore, there is a time limit (statute of limitations) for how long you have to file a wrongful death action. California allows grieving families two years from the date of death to file a wrongful death claim.

Call (415) 873-4775 for a free consultation.


All wrongful death plaintiffs (those filing suit) must show that the defendant (the party being sued) was liable “by a preponderance of the evidence,” which simply means that the defendant is more likely to have been responsible for the decedent’s death than not. In this way, wrongful death cases differ from criminal homicide cases, which require that the defendant must be proven guilty “beyond a reasonable doubt.”

Still, this does not mean a wrongful death defendant will be any more willing to admit fault. Many parties and their insurance companies will go to great lengths to avoid or limit their liability in a wrongful death case. Hiring an experienced law firm will strengthen your case and increase your chances of full compensation for all your losses.


The value of your case depends on several factors. Wrongful death claimants seek compensation for damages like funeral and burial expenses, medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and the loss of comfort, love, society, guidance, protection and companionship, among others. In many cases, the decedent suffered severe pain and suffering caused by the negligent party. California now allows recovery for the amount that would have been owed to the decedent had he or she lived.

It is important to remember that the surviving family also loses the financial help that the deceased earned. In a wrongful death lawsuit, the projected loss of income from the deceased can be awarded for the duration of the decedent’s expected life span or the family member bringing the claim, whichever is shortest.

Call (415) 873-4775 today to speak with a San Francisco wrongful death lawyer in a free and no-obligation case evaluation. We accept cases across the state and nation, with offices in Los Angeles, Larkspur, Bakersfield, Ontario, Sacramento, San Diego, and Washington, D.C.

Our Case Results

  • $10 Million Settlement A Major Foreign Plane Crash

    Wisner Baum obtained a $10 million settlement for the death of a passenger in a major foreign plane crash.

  • $14 Million Settlement A Major US Plane Crash

    Wisner Baum obtained a $14 million settlement for the death of a passenger in a major US plane crash.

  • $17.5 Million Settlement A Major US Plane Crash

    Wisner Baum obtained a $17.5 million settlement on behalf of a client who was killed in a major U.S. plane crash.

  • $10 Million Settlement Celexa-Lexapro Pediatric Class Action

    $10 million pediatric class action re false promotion of Celexa and Lexapro. Babies born to women who have used Lexapro and other similar medications such as Zoloft, Celexa, Prozac, Paxil, and Symbyax are at an increased risk for birth defects.

  • $8.5 Million Verdict Commercial Truck Accident

    Wisner Baum secured a $8.5 million wrongful death verdict against the food industry company, Tyson Foods, for the wrongful death of a young man.

  • $28 Million Settlement Defective Drug Class Action

    $28 million Paxil defective drug class action. A class action has been brought in the US territory of Puerto Rico against UK-based drug major GlaxoSmithKline.

Client-Focused Representation


We believe our track record speaks for itself. But you don’t have to take our word for it. See what our clients have to say about working with us.

    "I Can’t Imagine a Better Law Firm"

    Multiple lawyers recommended Wisner Baum to me and I have been consistently impressed with the quality of their work.

    - Best Law Firms Survey
    "They Are About Changing the Systems..."

    Wisner Baum are not only amazing attorneys but more importantly, they are activists. They are about changing the systems which got us into trouble in the first place. They understand their role in the process of making change.

    - Kim Witczak
    "Top Legal Minds in the Country"

    The Wisner Baum firm has some of the top legal minds in the country; they are driven, determined, trustworthy, ethical and passionate.

    - From Best Lawyers® Best Law Firms
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