The Workers’ Compensation Death Benefits a Survivor Can Obtain After a Work-Related Fatality
Injuries that occur on the job are always tragic. After all, anyone who goes to work is not expecting to incur an injury while trying to provide for their family. When it happens, it is unexpected and can lead to heartbreaking consequences. The greatest of these scenarios is of course when a worker suffers an injury with severe consequences.
It may be obvious that an injured worker can typically obtain workers’ compensation benefits. But what happens when the worker, unfortunately, dies as a result of the work-related injuries?
Why is this Question Important?
Because, unfortunately, Florida’s work-related fatalities numbers are on the rise. According to statistics published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 309 workers died as the result of work-related injuries in 2016, the most recent year for which data is currently available. That year represented the first time since 2007 that over 300 workers have been fatally injured in Florida. As has been true historically, transportation workplaces are the site of the most fatalities.
Additionally, it is possible that the actual number of work-related fatalities is higher than the number reported because fatalities due to illnesses that develop slowly over long-term exposure to certain risk factors, such as harmful chemicals, are often more difficult to pinpoint to a specific place of employment.
Who Can Recover Workers’ Compensation Death Benefits Under Florida Law?
Florida workers’ compensation death benefits allow the survivor of a deceased worker to recover when the survivor:
- Was dependent on the deceased worker at the time of his or her death AND
- Was either the deceased worker’s spouse, child, parent, brother, sister, or grandchild
What Workers’ Compensation Benefits Can Eligible Dependents Recover?
Compensation. You may be able to recover compensation for the work-related death of your loved one if the death occurs within one year of a work-related accident, or within five years of a continuous disability.
Funeral expenses. These expenses are limited to the amount of $7,500 and will be paid within fourteen days of receipt of an invoice.
Educational benefits. These benefits may be provided to certain family members of a deceased worker subject to their qualification for enrollment and ability to maintain regular admission requirements.
Extended care for an incapacitated dependent. While workers’ compensation benefits normally terminate for their children upon the child turning 18 (unless the child is enrolled in an eligible educational program, in which case this is extended to 21), these benefits may be extended for a child who is physically or mentally incapacitated in a way that impairs earning ability.
Have You Lost a Loved One Due to a Work Accident?
If you are dealing with the tragedy of your loved one being killed as the result of injuries incurred on the job, maintaining the ability to pay your living expenses can be difficult to figure out, especially when dealing with the concurrent loss of your loved one’s income. You should not attempt to obtain workers’ compensation benefits without help. The Miami workers’ compensation attorneys at Payer & Associates have significant experience helping people like you bear some of the burden you have been placed under. We can help you obtain the compensation you are entitled to. Begin by contacting us today to schedule a free consultation.