If you have been the victim of medical malpractice you may be wondering how medical malpractice claims work in Illinois. Medical malpractice lawsuits can be very complicated and difficult to prove. Laws for medical malpractice are specific and may vary by state. If you have been the victim of medical malpractice in Chicago, you should contact a Chicago medical malpractice lawyer.
Illinois Statute of Limitations
Illinois has specific statue of limitations when it comes to filing a medical malpractice claim. You cannot pursue a medical malpractice claim if you do not file your claim within the state’s statute of limitations, no matter how severe your injuries are.In the state of Illinois you generally have 2 years from the date of the medical malpractice injury or from when you reasonably should have known about the injury to file your claim. If your injury occurred on April 1, 2009 then you have until April 1, 2011 to file your medical malpractice claim.
Under no circumstances can an individual bring forth a medical malpractice claim more than 4 years after the date of the medical malpractice injury.
There are exceptions to the statute of limitations with regard to an individual’s age. If the individual was under the age of 18 when the injury occurred, then the statute of limitations is extended to 8 years from the date of the medical malpractice injury. However under no circumstances can a medical malpractice claim be filed after that individual’s 22nd birthday. With regard to a wrongful death claim, the statute of limitations is 2 years from the date of the individual’s death.
Vicarious Liability in Illinois
Hospitals can be found liable in an Illinois medical malpractice claim when an employee of the hospital is found to be negligent while on the job. Additionally,
a hospital can be held vicariously liable for negligence on behalf of an independent contractor physician if:
- They act in a manner that leads a patient to believe that the physician is an employee of the hospital
- The patient reasonably relies upon physician’s conduct
This type of liability is important in the event that a patient is negligently injured by someone who acted as an employee of the hospital but turned out not to be. The hospital can be held liable for damages.
Caps on Compensatory Damages
In the state of Illinois there are no caps on compensatory damages for Illinois medical malpractice claims. However, it is important to note that Illinois does not allow for punitive damages related to medical malpractice claims. Victims are also generally barred from recovering compensation if they are found to be more than 50% responsible for their own injuries.
Caps on Attorney Fees
There are caps on attorney fees in the state of Illinois. In a medical malpractice claim, fees for attorneys are limited to:
- 33 1/3% of the first $150,000 recovered,
- 25% of the next $850,000 recovered; and
- 20% of any amount over $1,000,000
The attorney, however, may petition the court for additional fees if their services entailed a great deal of time and effort, above the normal circumstances.
You should always talk to a lawyer about their specific attorney fees and fee schedules before you retain their legal services.
Contacting a Chicago Medical Malpractice Lawyer
At the Law Offices of Barry G. Doyle, P.C, our Chicago medical malpractice attorneys will examine all aspects of your claim, determine liability, and aggressively pursue the full amount of compensation due to you or your loved one for any injuries or loss of life due to medical malpractice. Contact us today for a free case evaluation – 312-263-1080.