How to Sue When a Loved One Is Killed in a Car Accident

February 18, 2019
How to Sue When a Loved One Is Killed in a Car Accident

Car accidents happen suddenly, and it is not uncommon for those involved to suffer catastrophic and life-threatening injuries. When you lose a family member due to their involvement in a auto collision, you can obtain the justice they deserve when you file a wrongful death claim against those responsible for causing the accident.

A seasoned Chicago wrongful death lawyer can help you secure maximum compensation for the death of your loved one. Read on to learn more about wrongful death laws in Illinois and how they can affect your case.

Wrongful Death Statute of Limitations

Filing your claim within the time frame set by the Illinois court system is of utmost importance. If you fail to do so, the courts will certainly bar you from seeking the compensation you would have otherwise deserved. With that being said, the amount of time you’ll have to file your claim varies based on the cause of death.

Because car accidents fall under the category of personal injury claims, the Illinois statute of limitations allows you two years from the date of the car accident to pursue your claim. Should you be unsure of how long you have to file your claim, your attorney can investigate to determine when the statute of limitations will expire in your case.

Making Sure You Have the Right to Pursue the Claim

In Illinois, a wrongful death claim can only be sought by the personal representative of the decedent’s estate. In theory, this could be anyone the deceased felt comfortable carrying out their wishes. However, in most cases, the decedent’s surviving spouse, adult children, siblings, or parents will be named as the representative.

In some cases, the decedent will not have designated a representative of their estate, at which point the courts will assign one for them. They do this so that the personal representative has the opportunity to file the wrongful death claim before the statute of limitations runs out in their case.

Obtain the Compensation You’re Entitled To

The good news about your wrongful death claim is that the jury hearing your case has the right to award you for any damages they feel apply to your case. This might include the lost wages and earning potential of the deceased, final medical expenses, the loss of companionship, love, support, guidance and household services, as well as the emotional distress, grief, and sorrow your family has endured.

What’s more, you may find your award exponentially increased should the judge find the actions of the defendant to be abhorrent or intentionally harmful. In this case, the judge will award you punitive damages as a way to make an example of the defendant.

When you want to make sure that you obtain maximum compensation for the loss of your loved one, a wrongful death attorney in Chicago can quantify your damages to reflect an appropriate monetary value of your suffering.

Work With a Chicago Wrongful Death Lawyer

If you are interested in fighting for the repayment you’re entitled to, you can further discuss the details of your case with a regarded Chicago wrongful death lawyer at Lane Brown, LLC. Claim your free case evaluation today when you complete the brief contact form below or give our office a call at 312-332-1400.

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