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Prejudgment interest benefits plaintiffs in wrongful death suits

On Behalf of | May 3, 2022 | Work-Related Deaths

An Illinois plaintiff has the right to recover prejudgment interest on partial damages that are awarded in a judgment. The interest accumulates on personal injury or wrongful death suits that are caused by the negligent actions of another person.

The new terms of a wrongful death law

Prejudgment interest is the additional money that is added onto a court judgement that hasn’t been paid yet. As the judgment is being collected, the interest builds up as it would on a loan.

The Prejudgment Interest Act was passed in 2021 to allow the addition of prejudgment interest to an awarded judgment for a personal injury or wrongful death. As a result, more defendants have considered the option of making settlements to avoid paying interest.

Calculating the interest

In Illinois, interest for a prejudgment is calculated at a rate of 6%, if the defendant is an official of the government, or 9% per year, and is based on the amount of the judgment. A consumer debt judgment that is $25,000 or less accrues interest at the rate of 5% per year.

Punitive damages, sanctions, legal fees and statutory costs are subtracted to reveal the total amount owed for that year. Prejudgment interest begins to accumulate on the day that the lawsuit is filed.

The additional costs of interest

A wrongful death law in Illinois allows the inclusion of interest in a court judgment. The amount of interest is increased every year as it is recalculated and charged on the unpaid portion. The defendant can prevent the accumulation of interest upon an appeal or the reversal or modification of the judgment.