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What is the time limit for a wrongful death claim?

On Behalf of | Feb 4, 2022 | Firm News

A wrongful death claim allows you to seek compensation for the death of a loved one. You may have a claim if another caused the death through negligent or unlawful actions.

It is important that you identify your ability to make a claim and file it as soon as possible because of the statute of limitations. This is the time limit in which you have to file. If you fail to file your claim on time, the court will not allow you to make a claim.

The time limit

According to the Illinois General Assembly, the statute of limitations for a wrongful death claim is two years of the date of the person’s death. However, as is typical of any rule, there are exceptions.


If the person responsible has an escrow account under the Criminal Victims Escrow Account Act, then you have a little longer to make your claim. Instead of having two years from the date of death, you have two years from the date the escrow account originates.

Another situation where the statute of limitations is different is if the death was a result of an intentional violent act, such as murder. In this situation, it is likely there will be a criminal case occurring rather quickly. Due to this, you have five years after the date of the death to file, or if there is a criminal case, you have one year after the final ruling in the case to file. You should note that if there is a criminal case, it must be against the person you will bring the wrongful death case to get the extension on the time limit for filing.