Wrongful Death vs. Survival Action

wrongful death vs survival action

Losing a loved one is never easy, but when the negligent actions of another cause that death, it can make that loss even more difficult to bear. The last thing on your mind is filing a civil lawsuit, but the compensation you receive from filing could remove the financial burden that occurred when your loved one passed.

When pursuing a survival action or wrongful death lawsuit during such a difficult time, it’s crucial to hire compassionate legal counsel. Chicago personal injury lawyers at Curcio & Casciato have years of experience handling survival actions and wrongful death claims and understand how emotionally and financially distressing this time can be for your family.

To schedule a consultation with a Chicago wrongful death attorney, call Curcio & Casciato at 312-321-1111.

What is Wrongful Death?

Wrongful death is a type of civil lawsuit that compensates the family members of a person who was killed due to someone else’s negligence. It differs from typical personal injury claims by including damages that you may have incurred from burial and funeral expenses and takes into consideration the financial impact that your loved one’s death may have caused. This can include loss of benefits, future earnings, and more.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Illinois?

The laws surrounding wrongful death laws vary from state to state. The wrongful death laws in Illinois are defined in the Illinois Wrongful Death Act: 740 ILCS 180. According to this law, the claim can be filed by an immediate family member or the personal representative of the deceased’s estate. This person can also be referred to as the executor of the estate. The immediate family members who qualify to file wrongful death lawsuits are the parents if they lost a child, the children who lost parents, or the surviving spouse.

If the deceased person did not choose an executor prior to their death or did not create an estate plan, the court can select that person. This court-appointed personal representative can carry out the tasks related to the deceased’s estate and can file the wrongful death claim if necessary. Family members are not always chosen as the executor. It can often be their accountant, attorney, or family friend.

Wrongful Death Damages

The wrongful death damages that can be awarded include economic and non-economic damages. These damages are meant to compensate the deceased surviving family members. You could receive the following economic damages from a Chicago wrongful death claim:

  • Loss of future earnings and wages
  • Care-taking costs
  • Medical expenses
  • Loss of benefits
  • Legal fees
  • Funeral and burial expenses

The non-economic damages that can be awarded are:

  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of consortium
  • Absence of companionship

When you work with Curcio & Casciato, you can rest assured that our Chicago emotional distress attorneys will do everything they can for you to receive proper compensation for the average funeral cost Illinois as well as other types of damages in your wrongful death lawsuit.

What is a Survival Action Claim?

A survival action claim is another type of civil claim that one can file when a person has died from injuries that resulted from an accident. Had the injuries not caused his or her death, they would have filed the personal injury lawsuit themselves.

There are some instances where the deceased person filed a lawsuit before their death. Under these circumstances, the survival actions claim can allow those legal proceedings to continue.

Who Can File a Survival Action Claim?

The Illinois Survival Act outlines the laws regarding survival actions. According to this law, survival actions can only be filed by the executor of the deceased’s estate. Similar to the circumstances above, the court may choose one if the deceased did not select a person to act as their executor.

survival action vs wrongful death

Wrongful Death vs. Survival Action

The main difference between wrongful death and survival action claims in Chicago is the individuals that can be awarded compensation from personal injury lawsuits. The damages from a survival action claim will go towards the deceased person’s estate, whereas the damages from a wrongful death claim will be divided between the deceased’s children, spouse, and other family members.

The other difference between wrongful death and survival action is determining appropriate compensation. Survival action compensation is based on the injuries the deceased sustained before their death. However, the compensation for a wrongful death claim is determined by the damages that the surviving family acquired after their family member’s death.

Navigating the differences between wrongful death and survival action can be complicated, which is why it’s critical to meet with an experienced personal injury attorney at Curcio & Casciato before filing.

What Evidence Do I Need for a Wrongful Death or Survival Action Claim?

When pursuing a wrongful death claim, you must be able to confirm that your loved one’s death was related to the negligent actions of another. Your legal team may also need to prove that your loved one’s death caused financial losses to your family.

Since survival action lawsuits compensate family members for financial losses before their death, your legal team will need to prove that your family member’s injuries were caused by another’s negligence.

Chicago personal injury attorneys at Curcio & Casciato will work to gather evidence for your lawsuit so you and your family can focus on mourning your loved one’s passing.

difference between wrongful death and survival action

How to Know if You Should File a Wrongful Death or Survival Action Claim

It can be difficult to understand what type of lawsuit you should file after losing a loved one. If your family member was in the process of filing a personal injury lawsuit before their death, the attorneys at Curcio & Casciato could change that lawsuit over to a survival action one.

Can You File a Wrongful Death and Survival Action Claim at the Same Time?

In some states, you can only file one lawsuit or the other. However, in Illinois, you can file both a survival action and wrongful death lawsuit at the same time. Chicago civil attorneys at Curcio & Casciato will be able to manage both your survival action and wrongful death suit.

Do Wrongful Death and Survival Action Claims Have to Have the Same Defendants?

If you’re pursuing both wrongful death and survival action claims simultaneously, they do not have to have the same defendants. In both cases, two different parties could be held liable for your family member’s death. For example, if one negligent party could have caused a car accident that injured your family member, medical malpractice could have eventually caused their death. Our Chicago car accident attorneys and Chicago medical malpractice attorneys can analyze your case and inform you of all your legal options.

Illinois Statute of Limitations for Wrongful Death

Illinois’s statute of limitations for a wrongful death lawsuit is two years from when your loved one died. Some exceptions may apply, so it’s important to discuss your circumstances with a wrongful death attorney even if you’ve missed the deadline to file.

wrongful death and survival action

Call Chicago Wrongful Death Lawyers at Curcio & Casciato Today

The loss of a loved one is a challenging time. However, when your family member dies due to the negligence of another, you have the grounds to pursue legal action against those responsible. In Illinois, there are several options available when it comes to legal actions against negligent parties.

Chicago wrongful death attorneys at Curcio & Casciato will discuss those legal options you have available so you can receive compensation for your loss. Your Chicago personal injury attorney will work with you to determine whether you have a survival action or wrongful death claim or if you have grounds to file both. When taking legal action against the party responsible for your family member’s death, you can’t trust just any law office. At Curcio & Casciato, you can have peace of mind that we will handle your case carefully and work to get you the compensation you and your family deserve. To schedule a wrongful death consultation, call 312-321-1111 today.

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