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Legally Reviewed by:

Jonathan Rosenfeld
J.D

April 29, 2023

Over $400 Million worth of case results

Awarded The Best Lawyer in 2024 by U.S. News

Nationally Recognized in Legal Community

Losing a loved one can be a devastating experience. The pain can be even more profound when that loss occurs due to someone’s negligence or wrongful act.

In such cases, the surviving family members may have legal recourse through a wrongful death claim. Peoria wrongful death attorneys can help guide you through the legal process and provide the support and resources you need during this difficult time.

Our experienced lawyers at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC will help you navigate this difficult time by providing compassionate counsel while aggressively pursuing justice on your behalf so that you can focus on grieving without worrying about finances. 

Call a Peoria personal injury lawyer at (888) 424-5757, or use the contact form for immediate legal advice and schedule a free consultation.

Understanding Wrongful Death Claims

Wrongful death is a legal term that describes a situation in which a person dies due to another party’s wrongful act or negligence. Wrongful acts may include reckless driving, medical malpractice, slip and fallbirth injury, or defective products.

At the same time, negligence may involve failing to act when there is a duty to do so, such as failing to provide adequate safety measures in the workplace.

Differences Between a Wrongful Death Claim and a Personal Injury Claim

While a personal injury claim seeks to compensate the victim for their injuries, a wrongful death claim seeks to compensate the surviving families for losing their loved ones.

The Wrongful Death Act in Illinois

Illinois law allows the surviving families of a deceased person to file a lawsuit against the party responsible for their beloved family member’s death. Under the act, the personal representative of the dead person’s estate can recover damages for the benefit of the surviving spouse and next of kin.

These damages may include funeral and burial expenses, medical bills, and loss of support and financial contributions from the deceased person.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Illinois?

The personal representative of the dead person’s estate typically files a claim on behalf of the surviving family members.

However, Illinois law specifies who is eligible to receive financial compensation through a claim. It may include the surviving spouse, children, and other family members, depending on the circumstances of the case.

Monetary Damages Available in a Wrongful Death Claim

Compensatory damages are intended to compensate the surviving families for their losses, such as medical expenses, funeral and burial expenses, lost income and support, and the failure of the deceased person’s companionship and guidance.

Requirements for Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Illinois

Losing a loved one due to someone’s negligence can be devastating. If you’re considering filing a lawsuit, it’s essential to understand the legal requirements involved.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?

Under Illinois law, the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate is typically the one who files a wrongful death lawsuit. However, the court can appoint one if the deceased has not named a personal representative.

Establishing Liability in a Wrongful Death Case

To file successful wrongful death claims, the plaintiffs must prove that the defendants were responsible for the victim’s death. It can be challenging, as the plaintiff must show that the defendant’s actions or inactions directly caused the death.

Elements of a Wrongful Death Claim

In Illinois, to prove the case, the plaintiff must establish the following elements:

  • The defendant owed a duty of care to the victim
  • The defendant breached that duty of care
  • The defendant’s breach of duty caused the victim’s death
  • The victim’s death resulted in damages

Types of Wrongful Death Damages

Losing a loved one is emotionally and financially devastating. If you have lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligence, you may be eligible for a monetary recovery for the damages.

Compensatory Damages

Compensatory damages are intended to compensate the family for the losses caused by the death of their loved one. The two compensatory damages can be recovered in a wrongful death case are economic (tangible) and non-economic damages.

Economic Damages

Economic damages are quantifiable losses directly linked to the victim’s death. These damages include medical bills, funeral/burial costs, lost wages and benefits, and the value of the deceased person’s future earnings loss.

These damages are calculated based on the victim’s age, health, earning capacity, and other factors.

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages are losses that cannot be quantified, such as the loss of companionship, guidance, and support, as well as the emotional pain and suffering experienced by the family.

Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are awarded in cases where the defendant’s actions were particularly egregious or reckless. These damages are intended to punish the defendant for wrongdoing and deter similar future conduct.

What You Need to Know About Wrongful Death Claims and Lawsuits

Losing a loved one to someone else’s negligence or wrongful act can leave families grappling with emotional pain and financial strain. Pursuing a wrongful death claim or lawsuit may be necessary to recover damages and seek justice.

File a Wrongful Death Claim

Under Illinois laws, only specific family members or the deceased person’s personal representative can take wrongful death action. An eligible family member might include a surviving spouse, minor child, parents, adult child, and siblings.

Wrongful Death Litigation and Holding the Responsible Party Legally Liable

Enlisting the aid of wrongful death attorneys can help you understand your legal rights, manage the legal process, and secure the compensation you deserve. A wrongful death lawyer can assist with filing the claim, gathering evidence, and representing you in court if necessary.

Consulting with an experienced and compassionate personal injury lawyer is essential. Our law firm offers a free consultation to help any family member understand your legal options and decide how to proceed to obtain financial support.

Importance of Hiring a Peoria Wrongful Death Attorney

These cases can be complex and emotionally taxing, and navigating the legal system without experienced attorneys can be overwhelming. Hiring a lawyer can help ensure that your legal rights are protected and that you receive the maximum compensation possible for your loved one’s passing.

An experienced Illinois wrongful death attorney can help you negotiate with insurance companies, gather evidence, and represent you in court if necessary.

Qualities to Look for in a Peoria Wrongful Death Lawyer

When choosing a lawyer, looking for someone with experience handling cases and a track record of success in obtaining compensation for their clients is crucial.

Additionally, you should look for a compassionate, responsive, and communicative attorney who will keep you informed throughout the legal process.

Questions to Ask When Choosing a Wrongful Death Attorney

When choosing a Peoria wrongful death attorney, you must ask questions to ensure you are hiring the right person for the job. Some questions you may want to ask include:

  • How many wrongful death cases have you handled?
  • What is your success rate in obtaining compensation for your clients?
  • What is your fee structure, and how will you be paid?
  • How will you keep me informed about the progress of my case?

How to Prepare for Your Initial Consultation

Before meeting with Peoria wrongful death attorneys, it is important to gather relevant documents or information related to your beloved family member’s death, including medical records, police reports, and correspondence with insurance companies.

During your initial consultation, you should also prepare a list of questions to ask the Central Illinois wrongful death attorney.

Hiring Peoria Wrongful Death Lawyers

Losing a loved one can be an overwhelming and emotional experience, and it can be challenging to think about pursuing legal action. However, if your loved one’s death resulted from someone else’s willful or negligent act, you may have a legal right to a monetary recovery through wrongful death lawsuits.

Hiring an attorney at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC can help you navigate the legal process and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. 

Call us at (888) 424-5757, or use the contact form for immediate legal advice and schedule a free case review.

Client Reviews

Jonathan Rosenfeld was professionally objective, timely, and knowledgeable. Also, his advice was extremely effective regarding my case. In addition, Jonathan was understanding and patient pertaining to any of my questions or concerns. I was very happy with the end result and I highly recommend Jonathan Rosenfeld.

- Michonne Proulx

Extremely impressed with this law firm. They took control of a bad motorcycle crash that left my uncle seriously injured. Without any guarantee of a financial recovery, they went out and hired accident investigators and engineers to help prove how the accident happened. I am grateful that they worked on a contingency fee basis as there was no way we could have paid for these services on our own.

- Ethan Armstrong

Jonathan helped my family heal and get compensation after our child was suffered a life threatening injury at daycare. He was sympathetic and in constant contact with us letting us know all he knew every step of the way. We were so blessed to find Jonathan!

- Giulia

This lawyer really helped me get compensation for my motorcycle accident case. I know there is no way that I could have gotten anywhere near the amount that Mr. Rosenfeld was able to get to settle my case. Thank you.

- Daniel Kaim

Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial.

- Lisa
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