The Basics of California Workers’ Compensation Death Benefits

William J. Kropach

If you have lost a loved one due to a workplace accident, we understand that this is a confusing time for you and your family. In the midst of what is a stressful situation, you may be wondering how workers’ compensation death benefits work. At the Law Offices of Kropach & Kropach, our Los Angeles death claim attorneys want to discuss these benefits and how they may apply to your situation.

Workplace Fatalities Are Devastating

According to data available from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), there was 5,250 total on-the-job fatalities across the United States during the latest reporting year. The agency states that, on average, more than 100 people die every week due to workplace incidents.

Under the California workers’ compensation system, death benefits are typically available to surviving family members. Specifically, the benefits are payable to a spouse, children, or other dependents if an employee dies from a work-related injury or illness.

Here is a brief review of the benefits available to surviving family members and dependents (these figures are for injuries on or after January 1, 2013):

  • Burial expenses – $10,000
  • One total dependent – $250,000
  • Two or more total dependents – $290,000
  • Three or more total dependents – $320,000
  • One total dependent plus one or more partial dependent – $250,000 + 4 times the annual salary support for partial dependents (not to exceed $290,000)
  • One or more partial dependent – Eight times annual salary support not to exceed $250,000

In cases where there are one or more totally dependent minors, after the payment amount listed above, death benefits will continue until the youngest minor reaches the age of 18. Any disabled minors will continue to receive these benefits for the remainder of their life.

There are various statutes of limitations, or time limits, involved in workers compensation claims in California. Typically, the statute of limitations for workers’ comp death claims is one year from the date of death, provided that no more than 240 weeks have passed from the date of the initial injury that led to the death.

Due to the nature of these incidents, a California workers’ compensation death claim case can be complicated. It may be necessary to secure an attorney for assistance to ensure that you and your family are treated fairly throughout this process.

Our Team Is Ready To Help You Through This

If you have lost a loved one in a workplace accident, you need to contact an attorney about your case as soon as possible. At the Law Offices of Kropach & Kropach, we have extensive experience handling these cases, and we are going to ensure that you and your family are treated fairly. Our goal is to make sure that you receive all benefits that you are entitled to through the California workers’ compensation system. When you need a Los Angeles workers’ compensation death benefit attorney, you can contact us for a free consultation by clicking here or calling us at 818-600-4714.

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