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Salvi & Maher, L.L.C.

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Who Can Bring a Wrongful Death Case?

Lake County Trial Lawyers for Wrongful Death Lawsuits

A wrongful death claim in Illinois must be filed by the Special Administrator of the deceased person’s estate. The Special Administrator is usually a close family member of the decedent and is responsible for combining any claims for wrongful death into a single action filed on behalf of all of the deceased person’s next of kin.

The Importance of the Special Administrator

When a person is killed in an accident that gives rise to a potential wrongful death lawsuit, Illinois law is very clear on who may file the claim. According to the Illinois Wrongful Death Act (740 ILCS 180), the action must be filed in the name of a Special Administrator for the benefit of the deceased person’s surviving spouse and next of kin.

If the decedent had a will that named a Special Administrator, that person is responsible for filing wrongful death claims. It is important to keep in mind that a Special Administrator for the purposes of a wrongful death action is not the same as the executor of the decedent’s estate—though the same individual could be named to fill both roles.

If the decedent’s will did not name a Special Administrator, one must be appointed by the court before a wrongful death suit can be initiated. In most cases, the court will choose a close family member of the decedent, such as a spouse, sibling, parent, or child.

The Assistance You Need at a Difficult Time

At Salvi & Maher, L.L.C., we understand that losing a loved one is always difficult. The situation becomes even more challenging when the death was caused by someone else’s actions or negligence. If someone you love was killed in any type of accident, our experienced attorneys can help you explore your options for collecting compensation and will remain at your side every step of the way. Contact our office to get the guidance you need. Call 847-662-3303 for a free consultation today at any of our four locations in Wheaton, Waukegan, Richmond, or Chicago.

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