Wrongful Death Lawsuit? “Next of Kin” Entitled to Share in Recovery.

The Illinois Wrongful Death Act permits family members to recover for “pecuniary injuries”suffered by them when their spouse or “next of kin” died because of the wrongful acts or omissions of another person.  Mio v. AlbertoCulver Co., 306 Ill. App. 3d 822 (1999); Poole v. Clausen, 328 Ill. App. 3d 964 (2002).  Family members are entitled to recover for pecuniary injuries, including loss of society and loss of consortium  (e.g., the loss of the relationship with the deceased person).  Drews v. Global Freight Lines, Inc., 144 Ill. 2d 84 (1991).


Who are the “next of kin” entitled to recovery?   

“Next of kin” under the Wrongful Death Act are blood relatives of a decedent who would have taken the decedent’s property by intestacy.  Estate of Finley, 151 Ill. 2d 95 (1992).  What does “intestacy” mean?  If a person dies without a will, the Illinois “intestacy” law dictates who is entitled to share in the proceeds of the deceased person’s probate estate.  Typically, next of kin include a spouse, child, sibling (brother or sister) or even a parent of the deceased person, depending on the factual circumstances.

Experience to Help You Recover Wrongful Death Money.

Recently, our law firm was hired by ten (10) half-siblings (half brothers and sisters) who were seeking a share of the wrongful death lawsuit settlement proceeds in the well-known Rekia Boyd case.  The case involved the tragic shooting death of Rekia Boyd by an off-duty Chicago police officer.  The wrongful death lawsuit settled for $2.9 million.  Rekia had 5 other brothers and sisters — making it a total of 16 people, including, Rekia’s mother — who wanted a share of the proceeds.

The initial offer to all ten of our clients was $100,000.  However, after only 5 months of litigation in court, the attorneys at DeBlasio & Gower obtained a $750,000 settlement for ten (10) of Rekia Boyd’s half-siblings as their share of a $2.9 million wrongful death settlement.   This settlement was significant because most of our clients were dispersed throughout the United States, and did not live in Chicago where Rekia lived.   The Boyd case is a true testament to our firm’s ability to represent clients in wrongful death cases and other complex litigation matters and pursue them aggressively with a great result.

The lawyers at DeBlasio & Gower have the experience you need to face the most difficult challenges in court, including the Circuit Court of Cook County, the DuPage County Circuit Court in Wheaton and the Will County Circuit Court in Joliet.   Strategically located with offices in Chicago and Oak Brook, we are located near the major circuit courts and major highways and interstates.  Call us for a free wrongful death or personal injury consultation at (630) 560.1123.  www.DGLLC.net.

DISCLAIMER:   While our firm has had success in many client engagements, past results can never be used to gauge the outcome of any future case.  Judges and juries decide the outcome of cases, not lawyers.  This blog post is not legal advice and should not be relied on by anyone as legal advice in their particular situation.  Furthermore, while DeBlasio & Gower welcomes communications via its website, please be aware that communicating any information to DeBlasio & Gower LLC or any of its attorneys through its web site or via any other method without a formal engagement with the Firm does not constitute or create an attorney-client relationship between you (or any other users, senders or recipients) and DeBlasio & Gower  LLC or any of its attorneys.  For your protection, please do not send us confidential information until you have spoken with one of our lawyers and received authorization to send that information to our Firm.  While our firm has had success in many client engagements, past results can never be used to gauge the outcome of any future case.  Judges and juries decide the outcome of cases, not lawyers.  Thank you.