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Workers' Compensation Benefits Following An Employee's Death

Posted on in Workers' Compensation

Crystal Lake workers' compensation attorneys, Workers' Compensation Benefits Following An Employee's DeathWorkplace accidents that result in injury or death can change an employee's life, and if he has dependents relying on his income, it can also mean drastic changes to their way of life as well. What the employee may begin to wonder is how his dependents will be looked after if he should pass away. Fortunately, as one of the employee's rights under the Illinois Workers' Compensation Act, there are certain benefits that can be passed on to the dependents after an employee dies.

If a person has already begun a claim for benefits, the administrator of the person's estate, or the dependents may substitute themselves in the person's place in order to receive any benefits the person would have received before death. All benefits that were recoverable by the decedent are recoverable by eligible dependents. Even if the injured employee passes away from a cause unrelated to the injuries suffered at work, the benefits that were due before the death would still be passed on. The law further instructs on how the benefits should be distributed between a spouse and other dependents.

If the employee dies as a result of the workplace injury before filing a claim for benefits, the dependents may also be able to recover death benefits which may cover any medical expenses, as well as funeral expenses. Death benefits are paid out monthly for a period of 25 years or for a total of $500,000, whichever is greater. The amount in monthly payments is based on a percentage of the average of the deceased employee's gross average weekly wage for the 52 weeks before his death, subject to minimum and maximum figures. Payments payable to a surviving spouse may be settled for a lump sum of two years' worth of the monthly death benefit amount if the spouse remarries and there are no children from the first marriage. However, the dependents should keep in mind that if the death was as a result of negligence by another party, the family can pursue a wrongful death claim outside the workers' compensation system.

Unlike benefits that had accrued and were due to an injured employee before his death, which may go to his dependents and his estate, death benefits are only payable to spouses, children under 18 years of age, and parents who were totally dependent on the injured employee before he died.

Reach Out to Us for Help

If you lost a spouse or child who was injured in the course of his or her employment and had a pending workers' compensations claim, you should contact an experienced workers' compensation attorney for a consultation on what steps you should take next. Contact the experienced Crystal Lake workers' compensation attorneys at Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC to learn how we can assist you in your case.


http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2430 http://www.iwcc.il.gov/benefits.htm

Illinois State Bar Association State Bar of Wisconsin Crystal Lake Chamber of Commerce Illinois Trial Lawyers Association McHenry County Bar Association
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