When people suffer fatal injuries at work, their families are often left not only with emotional anguish, but also with financial burdens related to the sudden loss of income.
It is important that these families are aware that they may be entitled to death benefits under California’s workers’ compensation system. In some cases, depending on the cause and circumstances of the accident, it may also be possible to pursue a wrongful death claim against the party that is responsible for the accident. It is important that California residents seek legal counsel in the aftermath of such an accident, even if the accident was caused by the victim.
A tragic construction accident took place just yesterday in Chula Vista when a 61-year-old worker fell 25 feet to his death, according to a news report.
The man, an employee of a sandblasting supplies business, was doing some work on a warehouse exterior at about noon when he fell off of a platform. The platform was being lifted by a forklift at the time of the fall.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is going to investigate the accident, which is a standard procedure. When such investigations take place, if OSHA finds any safety violations, it will likely fine the employer. However, workers and their families should be aware that workers’ compensation and death benefits are not tied to that investigation, but are actually a separate process. As mentioned above, benefits are generally available regardless of fault. This is a very important part of the law, as families who lose loved ones in a workplace accident should not have to suffer unneccessary financial strains.
Source: sandiego6.com, “Employee falls to his death in a work accident in South Bay,” July 18, 2013