Wrongful Death

Attorney in Illinois

Wrongful Death & Personal Injury

Lawyer in Ottawa, IL & Peru, IL

The loss of a loved one is a painful experience all of us have to go through at some point in our lives, but it is especially tragic when the loss is something that could have been prevented. At Wilson Law Office, our experienced wrongful death lawyers are here to help you recover after an untimely passing. When you work with our qualified law firm, we will assist you in pursuing your legal claim with proficiency and care. We understand what it takes to navigate the legal process and help you reach a favorable outcome after an unanticipated, wrongful death. We believe you should have access to swift answers and compassionate legal counsel.

Wrongful Death Lawsuits

A wrongful death lawsuit involves filing a wrongful death claim against someone who negligently caused someone else’s death. According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, motor vehicle accidents are the most common cause of wrongful deaths. Other fatal events often include product liability, animal attacks, medical malpractice, and workplace accidents.

A wrongful death lawsuit allows victims to seek damages and closure. Victims include anyone from the deceased’s estate, such as a spouse, child, or parents.

Illinois has two wrongful death laws: the Illinois Wrongful Death Act and the Illinois Survival Act. The Illinois Wrongful Death Act lets victims sue for financial losses. For instance, a wife’s death may leave the rest of her family without a source of income. The Illinois Survival Act covers economic and non-economic damages, such as emotional trauma, pain, and suffering.

How to Prove a Wrongful Death

At Wilson Law Office, we must prove four elements to win a wrongful death case. First, we must demonstrate that there was a duty where the defendant had a reasonable responsibility to avoid hurting other people.

Second, we must show that the defendant breached this duty. They did not respect the legally established obligation, as when, for instance, a drunk driver is involved in a fatal car crash.

Third, we prove causation, meaning that the defendant’s actions must be shown to have led to the breach in duty. In the example above, this would mean proving that the motor vehicle accident in question would not have occurred had the defendant not been intoxicated. The legal phrase for this is “but for.”

Finally, we outline the wrongful death damages. We provide evidence that the victim sustained economic and non-economic damages because of the death. A deceased loved one may have incurred $15,000 worth of medical bills in the hospital, on top of causing significant emotional harm, with their passing.

How to File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

A personal representative from Wilson Law Office will file the wrongful death lawsuit on your behalf. Many victims appoint a representative in their will. If the document does not include one, the local probate court in Illinois can select one.

The lawsuit will cover the harm that the defendant caused and the damages you want to recover. You can make a separate claim for funeral expenses. Some of the things you can recover in a wrongful death lawsuit include:

  • Loss of Income
  • Medical Treatment
  • Pain and Suffering
  • Loss of Inheritance
  • Loss of Care
  • Loss of Consortium
  • Funeral and Burial Expenses

Economic damages are more straightforward to recover than non-economic ones. For example, you might have medical bills detailing the cost of hospital treatments. Make sure to keep any receipts you have related to expenses. Courtrooms in Illinois measure non-economic damages in various ways but typically use a stipend or multiplier method to compensate victims.

The Statute of Limitations in Illinois for Wrongful Death Lawsuits

The statute of limitations for wrongful death lawsuits varies from state to state. In Illinois, people must file claims within two years of their loved one’s death.

There are some exceptions to the rule. For example, a child can file a lawsuit several years after a death, within two years of turning 18 (prior to their 20th birthday). Additionally, anyone suing a government agency in Illinois must do so within one year.

How Long Do Wrongful Death Lawsuits Take?

Wrongful death lawsuits typically take one to four years to complete- That is not always the case, though. Some cases reach a settlement or verdict within a few months. It all depends on the evidence and individuals involved in the lawsuit.

Most insurance companies prefer a quick settlement so that they can move forward with their business. At Wilson Law Office, we won’t settle until we fully understand the circumstances surrounding a death and its impact on our client(s). This way, we can make sure that damages will be fully covered by the compensation requested by our client.

Attorney Mark M. Wilson

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Mark Wilson is an excellent attorney who pays personal attention. He won't make promises he can't keep. He tells it like it is. He will fight to get you the best that he can. The best part, though, is the personal attention you receive. He is always there to answer your questions, whether in person, e-mail, or phone. He specializes in worker's compensation--so if you have a worker's compensation case in Illinois, give him a call. I'm sure he will be happy to review the case with you and tell you what he thinks.

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Chicago IL

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Marseilles, IL

Wilson Law Office, LLC - Lawyers in Peru, IL

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A Medical Malpractice, Disability,
& Work Injury Attorney
Serving Illinois

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