Massachusetts’ workers’ compensation program and the Social Security Administration provide benefits for the survivors of deceased workers to help ease the financial burden that may remain after the death. These programs are trying to provide necessary benefits to families in their times of need.
Also, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is trying to keep families better informed throughout their investigations of the fatal workplace accident. OSHA recently taught their representative how to facilitate successful communication with families following workers’ fatal accidents.
OSHA representatives are encouraged to contact families early and provide them with contact information throughout the investigation. The representatives keep the families informed throughout the investigation, provide them with copies of citations issued against the employers, and provide support during settlement.
While providing support is important, providing benefits to the families is crucial. Massachusetts’ employers provide workers’ compensation survivor benefits to the spouses and children of workers who have died due to a workplace illness or injury. It also provides $4,000 in burial expenses.
Survivors may receive weekly benefits that equal two-thirds of the worker’s average weekly wage, up to $1,135.82, which is the state’s average weekly wage from October 1, 2011 to September 20, 2012. After benefits have been received for two years, spouses may be eligible for an annual cost-of-living adjustment to their benefits. Spouses also remain eligible until they remarry.
Pulgini & Norton, LLP attorneys have handled workers’ compensation claims for over 25 years in and around Boston and its surrounding areas. If you or a family member has been injured at work and would like to seek legal assistance, please contact us at (781) 843-2200 or (888) 344-2046 or email us.
Survivor Benefits Available for Families of Injured Workers, Digital Journal, September 29, 2012