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Illinois Governor Signs SB0072, Amending 735 ILCS 5/2-1301 Providing For Prejudgment Interest To Personal Injury Plaintiffs

June 1, 2021

by Stephanie W. Weiner

On May 28, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed SB 0072 into law. This provision amends 735 ILCS 5/2-3103 and provides for prejudgment interest of 6% for personal injury cases. Interest runs from the date the complaint is filed. Accrual of interest is tolled if a case is voluntarily dismissed. This legislation serves to impose interest on most elements of damages, including future damages, non-economic damages, and medical bills. It does not apply to punitive damages, sanctions, statutory attorneys’ fees, or statutory costs. It also does not apply to claims against the State, local government, school districts, or other governmental entities.

There are some limitations on its application. If a plaintiff secures a judgment that exceeds the highest written settlement offer, prejudgment interest applies to the difference between the judgment and the highest written demand. On the other hand, if a plaintiff secures a judgment in an amount less than the highest written settlement offer, plaintiff is not entitled to prejudgment interest.

The effective date of this Act is July 1, 2021. For personal injuries or wrongful death claims occurring prior to July 1, 2021, prejudgment interest begins to accrue on the later of two dates: when the action is filed or July 1, 2021.

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