My spouse died on the job. How can workers’ compensation help me?

The tragedy of losing your spouse affects your entire life. Who will pay for the funeral? How will you afford the mortgage? Will your kids be able to go to college? You deserve help for all these expenses as you figure out how to live life without your partner.

Under Florida law, there are specific benefits that you and your children can receive if a court rules in your favor. The first important thing to know is that the maximum compensation your family can receive is $150,000.

Workers’ comp eligibility

In Florida, workers’ comp will provide support to you if your spouse:

  • Passes away as a result of—and within one year of—a work-related accident or
  • Passes away as a result of—and within five years of—a chronic disability from a work-related illness or injury.

Benefits for the spouse

You are eligible to receive a certain percentage of your spouse’s wages. This amount varies depending on whether you have dependent children:

  • Without children: You will receive 50 percent of your spouse’s weekly paycheck.
  • With children: You will receive 66.67 percent of your spouse’s weekly paycheck.

Workers’ compensation will also cover your spouse’s funeral expenses, up to $7,500. In addition, it can pay for your educational expenses from a qualifying post-secondary institution.

Benefits for other family members

Additional workers’ compensation benefits may apply for other family members, including:

  • Children, if the deceased has no surviving spouse
  • Dependent parents of the deceased
  • Dependent siblings of the deceased
  • Dependent grandchildren of the deceased

Handling the loss of a spouse is one of the hardest things a person can go through. Being able to alleviate your family’s financial stress during this highly stressful time can be an immense relief.

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