Joliet / Rockford / Wheaton Wrongful Death Lawyers
Catastrophic injuries resulting in wrongful death are always traumatic for the victim’s family. While nothing can replace the life of a loved one, there are certain remedies available under Illinois law. Our firm can hold those who caused a wrongful death occurrence accountable in accordance with the law.
At Zayed Law Offices, we can help you get to the bottom of what happened. If wrongful action was involved, we can vigorously pursue compensation on your behalf and on behalf of anyone else who suffered a serious injury.
The Difference between Survival Claims and Wrongful Death Claims
A wrongful death occurs when someone suffers an untimely death. Under the Wrongful Death Act, any amounts recovered are for the exclusive benefit of the surviving spouse and the next of kin of the deceased person.
A survival action is a claim brought in order to recover for personal injury and other property losses suffered by an individual before succumbing to their injuries.
Under the Illinois Wrongful Death Act, actions are brought in the names of the personal representatives of the deceased person. The personal representative has sole control over the litigation and serves to protect the interests of all beneficiaries.
Type of Recovery
Under the Illinois Wrongful Death Statute, we pursue compensation for losses including, but not limited to:
- Decedent’s felicity, care, attention, and guidance to family members
- Personal services rendered by the decedent around the home
- Decedent’s care of children
- Decedent’s future earnings
- Decedent’s spousal services
- Punitive damages
- Pecuniary injuries
Wrongful Death Actions and Creditors
Under the Wrongful Death Act, creditors of the decedent often inquire about their right to compensation.
The Act states:
Sec. 1. Whenever the death of a person shall be caused by wrongful act, neglect or default, and the act, neglect or default is such as would, if death had not ensued, have entitled the party injured to maintain an action and recover damages in respect thereof, then and in every such case the person who or company or corporation which would have been liable if death had not ensued, shall be liable to an action for damages, notwithstanding the death of the person injured, and although the death shall have been caused under such circumstances as amount in law to felony.
Furthermore, Section 2 of the Act states: “the amount recovered in every such action shall be for the exclusive benefit of the surviving spouse and next of kin of such deceased person.” This indicates that: (1) Any recovery is not treated as part of the estate of the deceased and (2) The decedent’s creditors cannot touch any amounts recovered in a Wrongful Death action.
At Zayed Law Offices, our attorneys are experts in recovering the compensation families are entitled to in the event of a catastrophic injury or wrongful death.
We assist clients who have lost loved ones in:
When someone is killed due to the negligent conduct of another, the heirs will have the right to file an accidental death lawsuit. Illinois law allows a cause of action to be brought on behalf of family members of the deceased. The pain and suffering caused by a wrongful death is often difficult, even unbearable, and it can take years for a family to recover from the loss. Zayed Law Offices will be able to assist your family to recover compensation for medical bills and other expenses.
Most states require that a wrongful death case is brought by a court appointed representative of the deceased person’s estate. This representative will bring the wrongful death case on behalf of and for the benefit of the deceased person’s spouse and children. Courts will often appoint one of the wrongful death claim beneficiaries as the personal representative.
Settlements and verdicts relating to wrongful death claims are generally not taxable.
When someone dies at work, and it is the fault of the employer, the heirs will have recourse against the employer under the worker’s compensation act. However, if the wrongful death was caused by the negligence of someone other than the employer (i.e. sub-contractors, co-workers, defective products) there will be a valid claim against tortfeasors other than the employer.
After a tragic wrongful death occurrence, an attorney should be contacted as soon as possible. This will allow the attorney the opportunity to investigate and gather evidence while it is fresh. One thing to keep in mind is that insurance companies are usually very thorough in their investigations and they are also very quick to begin an investigation after an occurrence. Contacting an experienced wrongful death attorney after an occurrence is a good idea.
- decedent’s felicity, care, attention, and guidance to family members;
- personal services rendered by the decedent around the home;
- decedent’s care of children;
- decedent’s future earnings;
- decedent’s spousal services.
- punitive damages; and
- pecuniary injuries.
In Illinois, recoveries are allowed for losses suffered by the victim of a wrongful death occurrence. These “Survival Claims” are brought in order to recover compensation for injuries and losses suffered by an individual before succumbing to their injuries.