If you have a family member or friend who is involved in a workplace accident in Middleton, there may be some comfort that comes from knowing that workers’ compensation will help to cover some of the expenses that result from the incident. Yet what if your loved one dies? Some might assume that since there is no potential for recovery, no additional benefit is needed. This fails to take into account, however, the financial (and more importantly, emotional) void your left with due to their loss. 

Fortunately, workers’ compensation death benefits are available in such a scenario. Per the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development, if the decedent was your spouse, you automatically qualify for death benefits. Should you remarry, those benefits may be reassigned to your children. The children of one killed in a workplace accident also automatically qualify for death benefits. Those benefits typically end when they reach the age of majority, but they may be extended into adulthood if a child suffers from a mental or physical disability. 

If the decedent had no surviving spouse or children and was supporting you in some way, you might then qualify for death benefits. For example, if they were your child, and they contributed more than $500 to your support the year before they died, you may be entitled to the greater amount of either four times that contribution or the normal death benefit. If your child was not supporting yet you remained on friendly terms, you may be entitled to up to $6,500. 

How much is the normal death benefit? The maximum amount you may be entitled to is up to four times their annual earnings.