Damages for medical bills and more.

Attorney Blog

Did you win at trial?settlement You can recover the cost of winning too!

When you obtain a judgment in a personal injury case, you are entitled to damages for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and loss of normal life. If your injury resulted in disfigurement (i.e. scarring), you are entitled to damages for that as well. What a lot of people, and attorneys for that matter, do not always know are what costs are recoverable if you obtain a judgment for your injuries.

The typical costs you can recover include the filing fee for your lawsuit and the costs associated with serving the defendant with the lawsuit (i.e. service of process/summons). Other lesser-known costs you can seek include the following:

  • Fees for the subpoena of witnesses;
  • Statutory witness fees;
  • Stenographer fees for an evidence deposition.

The key question with these costs is premised on whether the costs involve witnesses or testimony that was necessarily used a trial. This essentially means that the plaintiff needed the testimony associated with the costs to prove his or her case. Illinois courts currently are in conflict over other types of costs. For example, most Illinois courts also allow a victorious party to recoup the fees for videotaping trial testimony. However, the Third District has held these fees not to be recoverable.  Additionally, while most Illinois courts allow the costs associated with having a court reporter at trial, the First District has specifically held that these costs are not recoverable.

There are some costs which all Illinois courts agree are not taxable to the losing party. These include:

  • Fees for an interpreter;
  • Subpoena fees for a witness who ends up not testifying at trial;
  • The fees charged by expert witnesses.

For more information on the types of costs Illinois allows a prevailing party to recover damages look to 735 ILCS 5/5-108 and Illinois Supreme Court Rule 208.


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