by Jeffrey J. Kroll
One of the most significant pieces of Tort Reform was enacted in the state of Illinois. There is now a law in place where a 6% prejudgment interest rate on all personal injury and wrongful death cases exists. Illinois was only one of five states without some form of prejudgment interest. That has since changed. This may not seem like a big deal to some, but it is designed to encourage early assessment of resolution and settlement negotiations for those injured or killed in personal injury or wrongful death cases.
The 6% prejudgment interest rate applies to both economic and non-economic damages. This includes medical expenses, lost wages, physical pain, mental suffering, and loss of society. However, the statute exempts state and municipal defendants from pre-judgment interest. If you file a lawsuit against a city, township, municipality, school district or any other governmental entity, the 6% pre-judgment interest will not be applicable.
This Amendment dictates that prejudgment interest begins to accrue on the date of filing unless the filing date precedes July 1, 2021. In that case, interest begins to accrue on July 1, 2021, or the date of filing the action, whichever is the latter date.