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Peoria Wrongful Death Attorneys

People are naturally distraught when a loved one passes away. Grief is often easier on family members when they knew the death was coming, and they had time to say their goodbyes and prepare. When an unforeseen death occurs, the loss can be even more upsetting. What can be even more challenging to accept is the death of a loved one that arises from a sudden accident such as a car accident, work accident, or drowning. If you recently lost a loved one to an accident that was caused by the negligence of another person or party, you need the skill and dedication of Peoria wrongful death attorneys on your side.

Do You Have a Claim for Wrongful Death?

If an injured individual suffered a fatal injury that was caused by the negligence of someone else, a family member or a personal representative could file a wrongful death claim on their behalf. Typically, if the deceased person had lived and could have filed a personal injury claim, a wrongful death claim can be filed in their absence. Peoria wrongful death attorneys can help you determine if you have a valid wrongful death claim for the loss of your loved one.

Can Any Family Member File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

Under the Illinois Wrongful Death Act, the deceased’s spouse, parent (if they were under 18), or adult child has the legal standing to file a wrongful death claim. Other relatives or individuals could bring the claim only if they were named as the decedent’s personal representative before their death or by the court after their death.

Compensable Damages for Wrongful Death

Damages in a wrongful death case are somewhat different from those for a personal injury claim. They can also depend on who is a party to the lawsuit:

  • Spouses can claim lost companionship and emotional trauma
  • Children – Minor children (typically not adult children) may be awarded damages for the lost benefits of their relationship with their parent, including comfort and support
  • Parents – Parents of a minor child who has died (typically not parents of adult children) can also seek damages for their emotional trauma and their lost relationship with the child.

Wrongful death claims often provide compensation for the decedent’s mental and physical pain and suffering, the anticipated future earnings of the deceased person, any medical bills they incurred before their death related to the accident, and funeral and burial expenses.
Loss of consortium is often an applicable damage in wrongful death claims. This damage represents the love and companionship of the deceased person that the family members will not be able to enjoy or experience. When an adult parent dies and leaves minor children behind who will lack future guidance from the parent, this type of loss is particularly applicable.
Sometimes it is appropriate for the plaintiff to seek punitive damages. A judge can award these damages when the defendant’s behavior was incredibly reckless or malicious, which resulted in the wrongful death. Punitive damages are not applied for the purpose of compensating the plaintiff but to punish and prevent the defendant and others from acting in such a manner in the future.

Common Wrongful Death Claims in Illinois

Our Peoria wrongful death lawyers represent clients from all walks of life that have endured the loss of loved ones for various reasons. However, the most common wrongful death claims involve negligence resulting in:

  • Motor vehicle accidents: Serious and fatal injuries occur every day from passenger and commercial vehicle accidents in Illinois.
  • Pedestrian and bicycle accidents: School zones and downtown areas are hot spots for these types of accidents. Due to their lack of safety gear and protection, many pedestrians and cyclists lose their lives in these types of accidents.
  • Premise liability accidents: These accidents include slips and falls, accidental drownings, or being hit with an object. Typically, property owners are legally liable for keeping their properties hazard-free or for warning and preventing others from going near the hazard.
  • Medical malpractice: When patients suffer an injury due to the negligence or error of a medical provider, they might have a claim for medical malpractice. Examples of this type of wrongful death include those stemming from misdiagnosis, missed diagnosis, surgical errors, or even medication errors.
  • Boating accidents: Boat operators are legally accountable for preventing accidents and providing safety devices. If they fail to do so and someone suffers a fatal injury, they are liable if a wrongful death claim is filed.
  • Workplace accidents and illnesses: A work-related injury or illness can lead to a workers’ compensation claim. In some situations, it can also trigger a wrongful death claim.

Deadline to File Wrongful Death Claims

The deadline, also referred to as the statute of limitations for wrongful death claims, is generally one year from the date of the death as per Illinois law. However, in some circumstances, plaintiffs could have between one and two years to file the wrongful death claim. If the deadline passes and no claim is filed, the courts can refuse to hear the case, and the defendant can request that it be thrown out.

Consult with a Peoria Wrongful Death Attorney

The compassionate Peoria wrongful death attorneys at Malman Law understand the immense grief that can come with losing a loved one in a careless accident. If a loved one has been killed due to an accident, you have the right to pursue your legal options. Reach out to our Peoria wrongful death lawyers today. We will speak to you at no cost and help you explore your legal options. You or other family members could be entitled to monetary damages that could decrease the financial pressure you are under as a result of your loved one’s passing.

Call (312) 629-0099 today or use our online contact form to schedule your free wrongful death consultation. Our team is here for you and your family, and we welcome the chance to meet with you regarding your potential claim. Be assured that we will fight tirelessly on your behalf, making sure the at-fault party is held accountable.

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Contact Peoria’s Wrongful Death Lawyer

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