A Carol Stream wrongful death attorney assists victims with formal legal actions that are filed in court when a person dies because of the negligent, reckless, or deliberate act of another person, or entity. Laws vary by state, but there are requirements as to who can file a claim, a timeline to be followed, and proof of negligence must be proven by a Carol Stream Illinois wrongful death attorney.
Wrongful death actions, in accordance with most state statutes, have requirements as to who can file a claim, and how long they have to do it (statute of limitations). In many cases, family members and/or loved ones of the deceased party can sue for civil damages. The individuals who can bring forth the legal action must follow state-specific laws, which may require that a wrongful death claim can only be brought by the estate of the decedent to compensate it for the losses related to the untimely death. In these cases, a personal representative of an estate, who may be appointed by the court, or named in a will, to administer a person’s assets, would bring forth legal action in their name alone. Because of the state-specific variables on who can bring forth wrongful death litigation, it is always wise to speak to an experienced Illinois wrongful death attorney for guidance.
Monetary damages sought after are broken down by those that relate to the individual who died, and those that are necessary to compensate those left behind.
Survival damages are calculated based on expenses related to the care in the final days of life for the deceased, as well as funeral and burial expenses.
Survivor loss damages include those related to lost income, the deceased’s contribution to household upkeep, and the loss of affection and comfort to a spouse and support and guidance to children.
Settlement and jury award limitations.
State statutes may limit the amount of a wrongful death settlement, or jury award, and provide rules on how the funds are to be distributed among the deceased’s beneficiaries. Other states will earmark a certain percentage for a surviving spouse, or children before entertaining funds to be allotted to other family members, or beneficiaries. State-specific distribution requirements can also be based on the same practices utilized when a person dies without a will in place.
Judges consider the facts of the case to support claims of negligence and responsibility surrounding the death. Successful wrongful death cases in court will resolve with a judge’s recommendations toward appropriate amounts of compensation for economic and noneconomic damages, and punitive damages in some instances.
Hire a lawyer.
An experienced Illinois wrongful death attorney will build a case for economic damages such as lost wages and expenses, non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, and in some instances, punitive damages to punish the individual responsible for the death. Individuals should seek guidance to determine if they have an actionable wrongful death claim, based upon case-specific facts revealing another’s negligence.