The two main parts of an Illinois wrongful death lawsuit are the survival action and the wrongful death action. Each has important differences that can impact the structuring of your Illinois wrongful death lawsuit. Because they determine various claims for damages and settlement provisions, you should be aware of how they function.
A basic understanding of wrongful death and survival action is good to have, but you are not expected to know everything about them. The advice and help of an experienced Chicago wrongful death attorney can benefit your Illinois wrongful death lawsuit.
What is a Survival Action?
The survival action in your Illinois wrongful death lawsuit covers the damages that were suffered by the deceased before death. This includes conscious pain and suffering, disability, lost wages, and related medical expenses. In simple terms, following a severe accident that results in death, the survival action covers the damages incurred during the time spent trying to keep the victim alive.
What is a Wrongful Death Action?
The other part of your Illinois wrongful death lawsuit is the wrongful death action, which covers the damages suffered by the loss of the victim to those left behind. These damages include loss of society, economic support, and grief suffered by the beneficiaries of the deceased. If the fatal accident resulted in immediate death, wrongful death action damages would make up the majority of the Illinois wrongful death lawsuit.
Each type of action considers different types of damages and pays them to different parties. To better understand the differences and how they impact your Illinois wrongful death lawsuit you should speak to a trusted Chicago wrongful death attorney. Continue reading to learn more about these differences.
Distribution of Damages from a Survival Action Settlement
Because the damages claimed from the survival action in an Illinois wrongful death lawsuit are determined by the effects on the now deceased party, they are paid out to the estate of the deceased. The damages now become an asset of the estate and are distributed as is described in the deceased party’s will.
As with any matters regarding the estate of a deceased person, if there is no will present, there is a provision in the Probate Code known as the “statute of interstate decent and distribution” that will take effect. This statute controls what happens to a deceased person’s assets, including the distribution of the damages from the survival action, in the event there is no will.
Distribution of Damages from a Wrongful Death Action Settlement
The wrongful death action portion of the Illinois wrongful death lawsuit provides compensation for the deceased’s next of kin after losing their loved one. Who is considered next of kin is determined by the court and may not always be as obvious as you think.
Under the Illinois Wrongful Death Act, the surviving next of kin is entitled to recover damages for “pecuniary losses” including loss of society, economic support, and grief suffered from the loss. These damages are not considered part of the deceased’s estate and are instead paid directly to the surviving next of kin.
The differences between the survival action and wrongful death action portions of the case can make a significant difference in how the final settlement of your Illinois wrongful death lawsuit is distributed. For better success in structuring your claim and handling the disbursement you should seek the help of a professional Chicago wrongful death attorney.
Hiring a Chicago Wrongful Death Attorney
No two Illinois wrongful death lawsuits are the same and the damages claimed will be different for every case. To get the best assistance in how to file for the appropriate damages and under which type of action, a Chicago wrongful death attorney can provide experienced guidance.
The Chicago wrongful death attorney team at the Law Offices of Barry G. Doyle, P.C. can help you recover from your tragic loss and reestablish some stability in your life. Contact us today for a free case evaluation – 312-263-1080.