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Does Workers' Comp Cover Death?

Does Workers’ Comp Cover Death?


If your family member dies due to an accident at work,you’ll have a lot of emotions. Once the initial shock is over, you may bewondering if workers’ compensation in Virginia will pay for your familymember’s death.


Workers’ Comp Death Benefits


Yes, Virginia workers’ comp will pay death benefits todependent family members of someone who dies because of an accident at work.


What types of deathcount for death benefits?


Two types of death are covered by these benefits: a deathactually at work due to the job, or a death due to an accident at work withinnine (9) years of the accident happening.


If someone has a medical emergency unrelated to their joband dies, but happens to be at work, it does not count for workers’ comp deathbenefits. For example, a person has a desk job that is low-stress, bothmentally and physically. If that person has a heart attack (or stroke, or aneurysm,or chokes, or has another medical emergency) and happens to be sitting at theirdesk at work, death benefits will not apply. The medical emergency did nothappen because they were at work –they just as easily could have been at home when the emergency occurred.


If, however, someone dies because material was not properlysecured and falls on their head at work, it does count for workers’ comp deathbenefits. The person could die immediately or could get a head injury and passaway up to nine (9) years later and their dependents would be eligible fordeath benefits in both cases.


Who counts as a dependent family member for death benefits?


Dependent family members are a short list, which includesspouses; all children under 18 (including stepchildren and adopted children);children under 23 who are full-time students; children over 18 who are disabledand can’t work; and parents (including stepparents and adoptive parents) withno other children to help and no other resources.


How much money areworkers’ compensation death benefits?


Death benefits include up to $10,000 for funeral expensesand up to $1,000 for transporting the victim.


Dependent family members can also get part of the wage ofthe person who died. The family members are not entitled to the entire wage,and how many weeks they receive it depends on several different factors: whothe family members are, how much of a dependent they qualify as, how long ithas been since the accident, and other factors. How much money the familymembers get varies in each situation, and the total amount will be divided upbetween the dependents.




Call HammondTownsend today at 888-580-9048 today for a freeworkers’ compensation consultation discussion. Our expert team can help youfile a workers’ compensation claim for your loved one’s accident.


HammondTownsend is a Virginia workers' compensationlaw firm with offices located in Manassas, Richmond, Roanoke, Harrisonburg,Fishersville and Charlottesville.



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