There are many reasons why people in California take dangerous jobs. One of them is often that they pay better than customer service jobs or similar low-risk occupations. Those who want to support their spouses or children will naturally seek out higher-paying jobs, such as factory work or construction labor.
Unfortunately, the desire to provide for one’s family can also increase the risk that an individual assumes as part of their daily work. In some cases, workers who just want to provide for their families can wind up dying in a tragic workplace accident or as a result of a workplace-related illness.
In that situation, they will leave their families with medical debt at the same time that the family is trying to recover from the loss of income caused by the death. Thankfully, California’s workers’ compensation insurance program offers survival benefits to the family of people who die on the job.
Dependent family members can receive a portion of your wages
Only certain people can expect death benefits through workers’ compensation in California. Generally speaking, the individuals must be part of the primary family of the deceased and be dependents of that individual.
Spouses and children are the most typical beneficiaries, although grandchildren, siblings and parents can also qualify for death benefits. California can provide ongoing support for families related to lost wages. Their family can receive the same amount that the worker would have received under the state’s total temporary disability rate.
There is a cap to the total amount of benefits that a family can receive. It is based not on the income of the deceased, but rather on the number of dependents receiving benefits. The standard maximums range from $250,000 for one dependent to $320,000 for three or more total dependents.
Death benefits offer other assistance as well
The replacement of lost wages can make a major impact on a family struggling after the unexpected death of a loved one. However, those benefits are not the only benefits available to surviving family members under California’s workers’ compensation program.
Workers’ compensation may also cover the cost of a funeral. Families can seek up to $10,000 in compensation for funeral services for their loved one. Workers’ compensation can also pay any medical expenses incurred by the deceased prior to their death.
In addition to workers’ compensation, it is sometimes possible for family members to bring a lawsuit against the employer if neglect or illegal activity played a role in the death. Sitting down to talk with an experienced California workers’ compensation insurance lawyer can help your family determine what options you have after the tragic loss of a loved one because of their profession.