It's that time when the deer are out in full force and I am sure you've seen a few on the side of the road, but can you keep those deer?

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Illinois is one of 15 states that says yes. You can legally keep a deer you hit with your car in Illinois along with other animals you accidentally hit and kill. According to the Illinois Department of Natural Resouces,

An Illinois resident/driver of a motor vehicle involved in a vehicle-deer collision has priority in legally possessing white-tailed deer killed/injured as a result of a collision with a motor vehicle.

You also have a short window to claim that deer and of course the state doesn't make it easy. There is a form you must fill out to "legally" claim the deer. In my opinion, just leave it to the work to claim it is just way too much.

Individuals claiming such a deer must report the possession within 24 hours through our Claim a Road Kill Deer Report Form. This form is for reporting possession of deer killed by vehicle collision only.

This only applies to Illinois residents, if you don't live in Illinois the law is very different.

Non-residents may not claim a road-killed deer.

Now, let's hope this doesn't happen to you anytime soon, but I would imagine if you do hit a deer and it's not that bad you could keep it. I'm not about to keep anything I hit with my car because I am sure I would be furious at whatever I hit. I've hit a raccoon before, and several birds, but not a deer. Did I just jinx myself?

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