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An Overview of the Wrongful Death Act in Illinois

Posted on in Personal Injury

An Overview of the Wrongful Death Act in IllinoisA life cut short by carelessness can cause physical and emotional distress, potential financial disruption and depression for the surviving family members. Our attorneys understand that losing a loved one is never easy and will handle your case with care and compassion while providing representation. If you are unsure whether you can receive compensation for your loved one’s death, the following information on Illinois’ wrongful death laws should answer your most important questions.

Language of the Law

The Illinois Wrongful Death Act defines wrongful death as someone dying due to a wrongful act or neglect. Survivors of the deceased can file a wrongful death lawsuit if the deceased would have been allowed to file a personal injury lawsuit if they had survived the incident.

Causes of Wrongful Death

A wrongful death lawsuit can be filed in any situation when someone is killed because of recklessness, carelessness or negligence by another party. Situations include but are not limited to: 

If you have lost a loved one due to any of these situations, you may be eligible to recover damages.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?

A wrongful death act claim can be filed by:

  • a spouse
  • the parents of a minor child
  • an adult child

According to the Illinois Statute of Limitations of the Wrongful Death Act, a claim must be filed within one year of the date of the deceased person's death.

Can Damages Be Recovered?

Recovered damages cannot bring back the loss of your loved one but can hold the party or parties involved accountable. Within the Wrongful Death Act, eligible parties may recover “pecuniary injuries,” which includes benefits such as money, goods, and services. Additional recoverable damages include:

  • Funeral and medical expenses of the decedent
  • Loss of financial support
  • Loss of inheritance
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of companionship and parental guidance

Contact an Illinois Wrongful Death Attorney

If you have lost a loved one due to recklessness, carelessness or negligence, the Cook County personal injury attorneys at Schwartz Injury Law can help. We will work alongside you during your case to provide support and representation. We offer free consultations to those within Orland Park, Tinley Park, Bedford Park, Burbank, Homer Glen, Mokena, Oak Lawn, Palos Heights, and the surrounding areas. Contact us at 708-226-9000 today. 

Sources: 

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2059&ChapterID=57

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=073500050K13-209

https://courts.illinois.gov/CircuitCourt/CivilJuryInstructions/31.00.pdf 

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