Workers' Compensation Survivor Benefits in California
As a surviving family member or dependent of an employee who died from a workplace injury or illness, you may be entitled to death benefits through California’s workers’ compensation program. Do not forego pursuing what is rightfully yours and get in touch with an experienced Los Angeles workers’ compensation attorney today to get started on your claim. You may receive the coverage you need to get rid of the various issues that have been troubling you ever since your loved one passed away.
Attorney Kenton Koszdin and his associates at the Kenton Koszdin Law Office are sympathetic to the needs of those who have lost a loved one in an accident. We believe that everyone deserves a time of peace and mourning after a tragic incident. Unfortunately, survivors often have to deal with important yet disruptive financial and legal considerations before they can move on with their lives. Please let us handle your claim case in your stead so you can focus on your recovery. We are confident in our knowledge of workers’ compensation procedures and in our ability to net optimal case outcomes for our clients. For more information, call us today at (800) 438-7734.
Who Qualifies for Workers’ Compensation Death Benefits in California?
Generally, the most immediate family members, such as spouses and children, automatically qualify for death benefits without having to provide proof, unless the marital relationship has been severed, in which case, the surviving spouse may not be considered an assumed dependent.
Other family relations or household members may also qualify for death benefits, so long as they were living with the decedent and financially dependent upon him or her. These may include unmarried cohabiting partners, in-laws, stepchildren or stepparents, or any other party that can prove dependency.
What Do Workers’ Compensation Death Benefits Cover in Southern California?
Death benefits under the workers’ compensation program primarily cover funeral/burial expenses and lost wages. As of January 1, 2013, burial expenses are capped at $10,000. Lost wage coverage payments, the amount of which is usually a percentage of the decedent’s average weekly wage prior to death, is doled out every fourteen days to beneficiaries. For more details on workers’ compensation death benefits in California, visit the Department of Industrial Relations webpage.
Depending on the jurisdiction, a surviving spouse may receive death benefits for life, for a set period, or until he or she remarries or engages in another intimate relationship. Children usually receive benefits until they become adults, barring certain circumstances, such as debilitating mental disorders or illnesses. Other dependents are entitled to receive benefits for life or until they gain financial independence.
What is AB 1373?
Currently, the statute of limitations for filing survivor death benefits is 240 weeks from the date of diagnosis. AB 1373 proposes to extend that time to 480 weeks for families of public officers, such as police and firefighters. Since medical technology has undergone vast improvements over the years, those afflicted with severe illnesses may survive for longer periods of time before succumbing. Although a similar bill was vetoed in 2013 by Governor Jerry Brown, the new rendition has recently been approved by the California Senate Labor and Industrial Relations Committee.
Helping Los Angeles Families Move On
To determine whether you qualify for workers’ compensation death benefits, contact the Kenton Koszdin Law Office today. We specialize in these types of cases and can help you fully understand the intricate processes involved in the claims process.