Families and businesses that have been impacted by wildfires in California may not know where to turn for help recuperating. Insurance companies spend billions of dollars on wildfire payouts each year; they will do their best to minimize settlements and protect their own profits. A California wildfire lawsuit attorney, however, will work tirelessly to maximize your financial recovery and help you put your life back together after a devastating fire.
At Walkup, Melodia, Kelly & Schoenberger, we are highly experienced wildfire lawsuit attorneys who can help your family pick up the pieces if you suffered property damage, physical injuries, the loss of your home or business, destroyed personal possessions, or a tragic death in the family from a California wildfire. We are here for you when you need help the most. Contact us today for a free legal consultation.
Why Choose Our California Wildfire Lawsuit Attorneys?
- We have served clients throughout California for more than 60 years. We understand the difficulties that come with a wildfire damage claim and what it takes to help clients in need.
- Our lawyers can take care of the entire legal process on your behalf while you focus on moving forward. We will fight for a fair settlement while making sure your family has everything it needs to get through this difficult time.
- You won’t pay your wildfire damage lawyer unless we win your case. Our attorneys accept these types of cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning you’ll never pay us out of pocket.
What to Do After a California Wildfire
- Go to a hospital immediately if you have any fire or smoke inhalation injuries.
- Put your safety first; only return home once officials have given you permission.
- Once you can return, take pictures and videos of your property damage.
- Create a list of all of your damaged or destroyed possessions.
- Take steps to mitigate your losses, if possible, such as boarding up broken windows.
- Call your homeowners insurance company to file a claim.
- Cooperate with the insurer’s investigation and professional inspectors.
- Do not rush into a fast settlement that may not be adequate for your losses.
- Work with a lawyer, if necessary, to negotiate for a fair insurance settlement.
- Have your lawyer go up against the at-fault party or company in a wildfire lawsuit, if applicable.
How a Wildfire Attorney Can Help
Dealing with an insurance claim is not easy after a California wildfire. Many Californians find themselves in this position currently as they recover from the Dixie Fire. An insurance company will not handle your claim with a personal touch or try to get your family a fair payout – even while you’re dealing with the emotional toll of a fire. If you have a wildfire lawsuit attorney representing you, however, you can rest assured that someone is looking out for your best interests and advocating for just results.
Your wildfire lawsuit attorney can help you resolve insurance issues and pursue the settlement that you need to repair, rebuild and recover after a fire while you concentrate on your future. You can have greater peace of mind during a hard time with an attorney skillfully handling your claim or lawsuit for you. An attorney can provide legal advice, hire experts to investigate the cause of the wildfire, gather evidence to prove your losses, and negotiate for a fair recovery in or out of the courtroom.
Your Recovery Options After a Wildfire
Wildfires can be caused by natural events, such as lightning strikes. However, they can also stem from carelessness, such as a utility company negligently failing to maintain its power poles and electrical lines. Fires may also be set intentionally in acts of arson or vandalism. As the victim of a wildfire in California, you may be eligible for a financial recovery whether or not human error or negligence caused the wildfire. You could receive compensation for losses such as:
- Structural damage to your home or business
- Landscaping damage
- The loss of trees, vegetation or crops
- Damaged or destroyed personal possessions
- Vehicle damage
- Evacuation and living expenses
- Physical injuries and medical costs
- Injuries to pets or livestock
- The wrongful death of a loved one
If you have a homeowners insurance plan that covers damage from a wildfire, you can file a claim with your insurance provider to pursue financial reimbursement up to the maximum limits on your policy. If someone else caused or contributed to the wildfire, however, you may also be eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit. This could result in payment for additional losses, such as pain, suffering, emotional distress and inconvenience. With evidence of fault, one or more parties may be financially responsible – or liable – for your economic and noneconomic losses.
PG&E’s Negligence and California Wildfires
In recent years, the utility company Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) has been found at fault for several of the largest wildfires in California’s history. It has shown a pattern of negligence in its lack of proper equipment inspections, maintenance and repairs. PG&E has poorly maintained its power lines, for example, and failed to replace old and outdated equipment. PG&E allowing safety and maintenance to fall through the cracks has led to a slew of fire incidents around Northern California.
Investigations found that PG&E was behind the Camp Fire, for example – the deadliest wildfire on record in California with 86 deaths. It was also found liable for the Zogg Fire and the deadly North Bay Fires. PG&E’s negligence is so severe that it has even faced criminal charges for starting wildfires. Walkup, Melodia, Kelly & Schoenberger has been a leader in PG&E litigation for many years. We are no strangers to going up against this utility company and other powerful defendants on behalf of our clients.
We Can Help You Rebuild After a Wildfire | Contact Us Today
If you have been affected by a wildfire in California, please contact Walkup, Melodia, Kelly & Schoenberger to find out how we can help. We will step in to make sure that you are treated fairly and get paid the full value of what your home, business or belongings were worth. If we believe that you have grounds to file a lawsuit, our trial attorneys can assist you with litigation, as well.
Throughout the legal process, we’ll be there for you and your family to make sure that you have what you need to rebuild and move forward. Schedule a free wildfire damage case evaluation today to get started on the road to recovery. Call (415) 889-2919 or send us a brief online message and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.