Wrongful Death Laws in Illinois
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Losing a loved one suddenly is devastating, especially when it was caused by the negligence of another person. Although nothing can fully compensate you for your loss, pursuing a wrongful death claim may help you recover monetary damages for hospital bills, funeral expenses, loss of income and benefits, pain and suffering, and more.
At Zinda Law Group, our legal team has handled numerous wrongful death cases nationwide and helped our clients seek the justice and compensation they deserved. We are here to assist you through this difficult time, and as our client, you will pay nothing unless we win your case. That’s our No Fee Guarantee.
What Is a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Illinois?
A wrongful death lawsuit allows a family to seek financial recovery when they lose a loved one due to the actions of another.
A wrongful death claim may be brought if the decedent would have been entitled to bring a claim for the act that occurred, had they survived. The act that occurred could be an outright wrongful act, or it could also be an act of neglect or default.
Who May File a Wrongful Death Claim in Illinois?
In Illinois, only the personal representatives of the decedent can bring a wrongful death lawsuit. However, the surviving spouse and next of kin are the only individuals who can benefit from the claim. If damages are awarded, they are distributed proportionally to these parties depending on their degree of dependency on the decedent.
If the decedent left no surviving spouse or next of kin, the personal representatives or medical providers of the decedent may recover for the expenses of administering the estate or providing care to the decedent.
What Damages Are Available in an Illinois Wrongful Death Claim?
In addition to funeral expenses, medical bills, and other economic damages that the personal representatives and medical providers may be eligible to receive, a jury may award damages that they deem fair and just to the next of kin and surviving spouse.
The “fair and just” damages that a plaintiff may pursue in a wrongful death claim include pecuniary damages, such as damages for grief, sorrow, and mental suffering.
However, if the court finds that the decedent played a part in his or her death, the surviving parties may only be entitled to a limited amount of damages, or their claim may be barred entirely.
How Long Do I Have to File a Wrongful Death Claim in Illinois?
The statute of limitations for a wrongful death claim in Illinois depends on what action brought about the death of the decedent. If the death was caused by another’s violent actions, the claim must be brought within five years from the date of death. If the death was caused by any other action, the suit must be brought within two years of that date of death.
Although this may seem like a long time, it is actually a lot shorter than it sounds. Getting back to your routine while grieving the loss of your loved one may cause time to speed by quickly. Therefore, it is important to seek out an attorney sooner rather than later, as waiting too long to begin the process could lead you to miss out on possible financial recovery.
Get Help from Our Wrongful Death Lawyers
At Zinda Law Group, our wrongful death attorneys have helped thousands get their lives back on track after an accident. We have the knowledge and resources necessary to help you seek maximum compensation for your loss.
Our firm also believes that you should never have to worry about their ability to afford excellent legal representation while grieving. That is why we offer 100% free consultations and why you will pay nothing unless we achieve a favorable settlement, judgment, or verdict for your personal injury case. That’s our No Fee Guarantee.
Meetings with attorneys are available by appointment only.