Losing a loved one is one of the most difficult and challenging experiences in life. If your loved one has died as the result of a car accident he or she did not cause, medical malpractice, or another negligent act, it can be even more difficult.
A Chicago wrongful death attorney at Clifford Law Offices can help you file a lawsuit and take back control. We are an award-winning, nationally recognized law firm with decades of personal injury and wrongful death experience. Our injury lawyers have obtained over $4 billion in settlements for our clients. Contact us today for a free case evaluation to see if you have a wrongful death case.
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- What Is Wrongful Death?
- Illinois Rules for Wrongful Death Lawsuits
- What Damages Can Be Claimed In a Wrongful Death Action?
- Contact a Chicago Wrongful Death Lawyer at Clifford Law Offices Today
- Areas We Serve
What Is Wrongful Death?
According to 740 Illinois Compiled Statutes 180, wrongful death is defined in Illinois as:
- A death caused by a wrongful act, neglect, or default.
- If death had not occurred, the deceased would have been eligible for damages through a personal injury lawsuit because of the injuries resulting from the wrongful act, neglect, or default.
You can hold the person or entity responsible for the death liable through a wrongful death lawsuit. These lawsuits allow the spouse of the deceased person or the next of kin to claim financial compensation for losses resulting from the wrongful death.
What Are Illinois’ Rules for Wrongful Death Lawsuits?
In Illinois, only the personal representative of the deceased’s estate can file a wrongful death lawsuit. The deceased’s will or estate plan usually names this individual. If these documents do not name a representative or the deceased did not leave a will behind, the court can appoint one. This representative can be:
- The spouse of the deceased
- The deceased’s adult child
- The parent of a deceased minor
A wrongful death lawsuit is subject to a statute of limitations, based on either the death date or the type of incident. The statute of limitations for a wrongful death lawsuit is either:
- One year from the death date
- Based on the statute of limitations for the underlying cause of death
The court bases the statute of limitations on whichever date is later. For example, if the cause of death would fall under a personal injury lawsuit if death had not occurred, the statute of limitations is two years.
What Damages Can Be Claimed In a Wrongful Death Action?
If you lost a loved one due to an act of negligence, no amount of money can ever compensate you for your loss. Seeking damages in a wrongful death claim is a legal means to hold responsible parties accountable and help cover your family’s future financial needs, including any physical, financial, and emotional losses resulting from the wrongful death.
The jury awards damages in wrongful death cases to benefit the surviving spouse and next of kin. Damages that you can recover from a wrongful death lawsuit include:
- Medical bills for the deceased if he or she did not die immediately and had to seek medical care for his or her injuries
- Loss of services that the deceased would have provided for his or her spouse and children, including education and instruction for the children
- Loss of consortium, which refers to the value of the deceased’s relationship with his or her spouse and children
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Lost income, benefits, pensions, or Social Security income that the deceased would have provided for his or her family members
- Emotional damages for the surviving family, also known as pain and suffering
Contact a Chicago Wrongful Death Lawyer at Clifford Law Offices Today
If you lost a loved one due to an accident, medical malpractice, or another form of wrongful death, you and your family deserve fair compensation for your financial losses and emotional distress. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with a wrongful death lawyer in Chicago if you suspect you have a wrongful death claim.
Our attorney, Tracy Brammeier, was by our side from the very first moment we reached out to Clifford Law Offices. Her outstanding professionalism and compassion melted our hearts and helped us to survive during the unbearable time when we had to face the loss of our 23-year-old daughter. Tracy was supportive, knowledgeable, caring, and simply amazing. We can’t thank her enough for the way she handled our complicated case.
We are extremely grateful for all of Tracy’s efforts. Our grief was always handled with dignity and compassion. She made the complex process understandable.
Areas We Serve
Arlington Heights | Berwyn | Calumet City | Elmhurst | Chicago Heights | Crystal Lake | Barrington | Barrington Hills | Algonquin | County Club Hills | Batavia | Bensenville | Cicero | Carol Stream | Lincolnwood | Chicago Ridge | Bridgeview | Buffalo Grove | Aurora | Westchester | Carpentersville | Channahon | Elmwood Park | Winnetka | Naperville | Bloomingdale | Westmont