If your loved ones died from injuries they sustained on the job, you should know your rights including the workers’ comp death benefits you may be entitled to. By working with one of the best workers’ compensation lawyers in Richmond, you will know who can get these benefits and how to file a claim.
Death benefits in the workers’ comp system in Virginia can be tricky. For death claim to be valid, the deceased worker should have died while doing their job duties or suffering from occupational disease.
Filing a Claim for Death Benefits
Family members of a deceased worker should contact an attorney as soon as possible. This shortens the time the have to wait for the benefits they need to move forward. Also, there is a statute of limitations to think about when pursuing a claim.
Workers’ comp death benefits are available to dependent family members and partially dependent family. Family members who depend on the deceased’s income are eligible to get 2/3 of the latter’s income. They can continuously get these benefits for 500 weeks, which add up to more than 9 years. Meanwhile, partially dependent loved ones are eligible to get part of the income. The amount will depend on the way the household expenses of the family are divided.
How Work-Related Deaths Can Happen
A worker can die because of different reasons including falls, burns, electrocution, respiratory distress due to airborne irritants, and different injuries caused by poorly maintained or malfunctioning equipment. Sometimes, deaths can occur because of unexpected weather condition, unsafe work condition, and violent coworkers.
Regardless of why your loved one die, you will face need to face in the best way you can and adjust to the changes that may occur in your life. After you lost a loved one, your family could deal with financial and emotional challenges, especially if the deceased was the main provider. Workers’ comp death benefits can help your family in the wake of your loss. But, because of the different rules that govern these benefits, you must educate yourself on how they work and call an attorney who can help you with your case.
Negotiating a Lump Sum Payment
Although your loved one’s employer can pay weekly wage benefits for up to 500 weeks, waiting for these payments may not be in the best interest of your family. Thankfully, you can negotiate to get a partial or full lump sum payment that you can use to fulfill your family’s financial obligations. This is possible as long as the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission approves the agreement.