Stroudsburg workers’ compensation lawyers with 60 years of experience
If you have lost a loved one in a tragic work accident injury or due to a catastrophic occupational disease that they contracted during their regular job-related duties, you may be entitled to financial support through the benefits provided by their employer’s workers’ compensation insurance mandated by the Pennsylvania Workers Compensation Act.
When an employee is hurt at work or has developed an occupational disease from work, they are entitled by law to receive workers’ compensation benefits as financial support during their recovery. Workers’ compensation benefits provide coverage for medical bills related to work injuries and illnesses as well as wage loss benefits during the time the worker is recovering from their injury or disease.
Munley Law is committed to fighting for injured workers in Stroudsburg as well as the families of the victims of a catastrophic work-related death or fatal disease. We have fought for justice for PA workers for more than six decades. Munley Law has the experience, knowledge, and passion to fight for the death benefits you deserve to help you put your life back together. We know PA workers’ compensation law and we can deliver results to the families of workers who have died in a work accident or due to a work-related illness.
If you have lost a loved one due to a workplace accident or illness in Stroudsburg, call our Stroudsburg workers’ compensation attorneys today for a no-cost consultation. Chat live, email us, or call our Stroudsburg office for a free consultation.
What Do I Do When My Loved One Died As a Result of a Work Injury or Disease?
When a loved one dies, the family can be thrown into turmoil. You are dealing with the grief from your loss, the stress of making funeral plans, dealing with financial losses, and more. But when your loved one dies as a result of a tragic work accident or an occupational disease, you need to act quickly to ensure you can remain eligible to receive death benefits from their workers’ compensation insurance.
Notify their employer as soon as possible that you plan to file a claim for death benefits through their workers’ compensation insurance company. You are entitled to financial help to cover a percentage of lost income, medical bills, and funeral and burial or cremation costs.
Our Stroudsburg workers’ compensation law firm can help. Your case evaluation is free. We can explain all of the death benefits you might be entitled to under PA law.
What Workers’ Compensation Benefits Can I Expect?
Pennsylvania workers are entitled by PA law to receive work-related benefits if an injury or illness occurs as a direct result of regular work duties.
When a worker dies as a result of an accident or disease caused during the regular scope of their job duties, the surviving family members may be eligible to receive benefits for:
- Medical expenses for the worker for any treatment received before they died
- A percentage of the worker’s lost income
- Financial assistance with funeral and burial costs
In order to be eligible to collect death benefits through a PA workers’ compensation claim, a work-related injury or illness must have caused or contributed to the death of your loved one.
It is not required that the death occur while the employee is physically at work, such as during a catastrophic workplace accident. Even if an injured or sick worker dies months or years later, if the death is directly correlated to the work-related injury or illness, death benefits may be available to the family.
For instance, your loved one worked in an environment with dangerous chemicals and they eventually died as a result of a cancer known to be caused by repeated exposure to the chemical.
Even if your loved one had other medical conditions that were unrelated to their job duties, you still may be eligible for death benefits if the work injury or work-related disease contributed to or accelerated your loved one’s death.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Workplace Fatalities in Pennsylvania?
The most worker deaths in Pennsylvania were in the construction, agriculture, mineral and gas mining and extraction, and private transportation and warehousing sectors.
In 2021, in Pennsylvania the top three most deadly industry groups for workers were
- Transportation and warehousing
- Construction and extraction
Some of the most common workplace accidents which cause death in Pennsylvania were:
- Struck by object
- Transportation incidents
- Exposure to harmful chemicals and substances
Who is Eligible to Receive Stroudsburg Workers’ Compensation Death Benefits?
Pennsylvania workers compensation act provides that the surviving spouse and children of the worker who has died are eligible for PA death benefits. In certain circumstances, other family members who were financially dependent on the worker such as dependent parents, or surviving siblings can collect death benefits.
Pennsylvania provides funeral benefits in the amount of $3,000.oo to the family of the decedent. Regular weekly death benefits or bi-weekly payments to survivors may also be paid based on the deceased worker’s wages at the time of their death.
A percentage of the decedent’s wages at the time of their death will be provided to the surviving spouse, if there is one. The actual percentage will depend on how many children the widowed spouse has custody of.
If the widowed spouse remarries, the benefit payments will be continued for two more years and then will be discontinued.
There are other circumstances when these benefits can be discontinued or interrupted. If you are receiving death benefits for a deceased spouse, and your benefits have been contested, call a Stroudsburg workers’ comp attorney at Munley Law today.
Children may receive death benefits even if there is no surviving spouse. Benefits would then be directly payable until the child reaches the age of 18. There are two exceptions to this rule:
- The child is disabled. If the child is disabled, they are entitled to receive death benefits for as long as the disability lasts. If the disability is permanent, the death benefits are also permanent.
- The child is over 18 but enrolled in an accredited college or university. A child enrolled in an accredited institution will receive benefits until they graduate or until the age of 23.
Other Family Members
In the event the worker does not have a surviving spouse or children, wage loss death benefits may be paid to surviving parents or siblings if they lived with and were dependents of the worker.
Why Do Death Benefits Get Denied?
Just as with regular workers’ compensation benefits, the worker’s workers comp insurance carrier may refuse to pay benefits. There can be many reasons the insurer may refuse to pay benefits to the family of a deceased worker such as:
- The insurer claims the injury or disease that caused the death was not work-related
- The insurer or employer claims that the deceased worker was under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- The worker intentionally tried to harm themselves. However, it is important to note that if an employee has committed suicide as a result of a job-related mental illness, the survivors or dependents may still be eligible to collect death benefits. This can be more complicated to prove. It is a good idea to hire an experienced attorney who can help provide the necessary evidence and testimony to this fact.
- It has been longer than 300 weeks since the worker died from their work-related illness or injury. If the illness or the injury did not cause the worker’s immediate death, the worker needs to have died within 300 weeks of the injury or the time they became sick.
A Stroudsburg Workers’ Compensation Attorney Can Help
If you have lost a loved one due to a workplace accident in Stroudsburg, an experienced attorney can help. Munley Law has been working with the families of injured workers for more than 60 years. We know and understand how much financial stress and strain surviving dependents are under.
Your Stroudsburg death benefits attorney will sit down, discuss your eligibility and provide your case evaluation for free. We charge the family nothing until we win your maximum allowed death benefits.
If you have lost a loved one due to a workplace accident or illness in Stroudsburg and you are not sure where to begin, call Munley Law workers’ compensation attorneys today for a no-cost consultation. Chat live, email us, or call our Stroudsburg office for a free consultation.
Stroudsburg Practice Areas
Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys
27 N 6th St,
Stroudsburg, PA 18360