Losing a loved one due to the careless actions of another is a heartrending experience. The pain, sorrow, and confusion can be overwhelming. At Stiberth, Scarlati & Boudreau, LLC, we extend our deepest sympathies to those grappling with such painful circumstances. Our mission is to provide emotional support, legal guidance, and diligent representation during this challenging time.

As a team of seasoned attorneys based in Chicago, Illinois, we commit ourselves to seeking justice for grieving families affected by wrongful death incidents. While no amount of compensation can bring back your cherished one, it can hold the wrongdoer accountable and possibly prevent similar tragedies from happening to others. It's about pursuing justice, securing financial relief, and finding some semblance of closure. 

Why File a Wrongful Death Claim?

When you're coping with the loss of a loved one, it's hard to think about anything else. You're grieving, and that's natural. Yet, as difficult as it might be, considering a wrongful death claim can play a crucial role in your healing process and your future. Here's why:

  • Accountability: Through a wrongful death claim, the negligent party is held accountable, offering some solace that justice has been served. 

  • Financial Relief: The aftermath of losing a loved one often brings unexpected financial burdens. Funeral expenses, burial costs, medical bills, and the lost income of your loved one can quickly accumulate.  

  • Closure and Peace: While no amount of money can replace your loved one, a wrongful death claim can provide a sense of closure and peace. Knowing that the responsible party has been held accountable can help you move forward and focus on healing. 

  • Future Security: If your loved one was a primary earner, their loss could significantly impact your family's financial stability. A wrongful death claim can secure the financial future of the deceased's dependents.



What Constitutes Wrongful Death in Illinois?

In Illinois, a wrongful death is any death caused by the wrongful act, neglect, or default of another party. This includes situations where death resulted from negligence, intentional harm, or a failure to fulfill a duty. Incidents that can give rise to wrongful death claims are varied and include:

Statute of Limitations in Illinois

Familiarity with the statute of limitations for filing a wrongful death claim in Illinois is crucial. This law sets a deadline within which a claim must be lodged. In Illinois, the statute of limitations for most wrongful death claims is two years from the date of death. It's vital to consult with an attorney promptly to ensure your claim is filed within this timeframe. 

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Illinois?

Eligible parties to file a wrongful death claim in Illinois include: 

  • surviving spouse 

  • children or grandchildren (if there is no surviving spouse) 

  • parents (if there is no surviving spouse or children) 

  • personal representative of the deceased person's estate 

What Needs to Be Proven to Constitute Wrongful Death?

In Illinois, a wrongful death claim is a legal action that can be taken when a person's death is caused by the wrongful act, neglect, or default of another party. You need to prove the following: 

  • Negligence: The plaintiff must prove that the death of their loved one was caused in part or entirely due to the carelessness, recklessness, or negligent actions of the defendant. 

  • Breach of Duty: You must establish that the defendant owed a duty to the deceased victim. For example, a driver has a duty to drive safely, and doctors have a duty to provide proper healthcare. 

  • Causation: Besides showing that the defendant breached a duty, you must also prove that this breach directly resulted in the death of your loved one. 

  • Damages: Finally, the death of the victim must have generated quantifiable damages such as hospitalization costs, funeral and burial costs, loss of income and potential earnings, loss of protection, guidance, and inheritance along with the pain and suffering of the victim prior to death. 

Damages Available

In the aftermath of a wrongful death, surviving family members may face significant financial burdens. Illinois personal injury law allows for the recovery of damages to compensate for these losses. These damages can include: 

  • Medical Bills: Any costs associated with medical care the deceased received due to the injuries that led to their death can be recovered. 

  • Future Medical Expenses: If the deceased required ongoing medical care that would have extended into the future, you may be compensated for these anticipated costs. 

  • Lost Wages and Earning Potential: If your loved one was employed or had the potential to earn income, you could recover damages for the loss of their expected earnings. This provides financial security for family members who depended on the deceased's income. 

  • Funeral and Burial Expenses: The costs of funeral and burial services can be substantial. A wrongful death claim can cover these expenses, removing a significant financial burden from grieving families. 

  • Pain and Suffering: This compensation is for the physical pain and emotional distress the deceased experienced before their death. 

  • Loss of Consortium: Spouses can receive damages for the loss of companionship, affection, and sexual relationship that they shared with the deceased. 

  • Loss of a Normal Life: This refers to the reduction in a person's ability to pursue the activities of life that they enjoyed before their injury. In the context of a wrongful death claim, it can be seen as the loss of enjoyment of life that the deceased would have experienced had they lived. 

  • Mental Anguish: Surviving family members can seek damages for the emotional pain they suffer due to the loss of their loved one. This can include feelings of sorrow, grief, and depression. 

  • Physical Impairment or Disfigurement: If the deceased experienced any physical impairment or disfigurement before their death due to the defendant's negligence, compensation may be awarded. 


At Stiberth, Scarlati & Boudreau, LLC, we are a team of dedicated wrongful death attorneys serving Chicago, Illinois. Our commitment is to provide compassionate support and relentless representation to families who have lost a loved one due to someone else's negligence. We're here to guide you through this challenging time and seek justice and compensation for your loss.