The sudden loss of a loved one can have a snowball effect on surviving family members. The dismay over the news can turn to immense grief and other emotional turmoil, and the loss of an income-earning spouse can lead to financial problems, which can, in turn, cause numerous other issues. Unfortunately, you may have recently begun to face such problems after your spouse suffered fatal injuries in a work-related accident.
The news of the accident undoubtedly left you feeling devastated, but as much as you would likely love to stop and let the world turn on without your participation for a time, you have obligations you must address. In particular, you probably need to keep your financial affairs in order. Funeral expenses, handling household costs on your single income, meeting your needs and the needs of your children, and much more can leave you feeling overwhelmed financially.
Workers’ compensation benefits
Because your loved one died while on the job, you may have reason to apply for workers’ compensation benefits. You may have initially believed that this coverage only applied to workers who suffered non-fatal injuries or illness at work, but spouses and other loved ones may be entitled survivor’s benefits or death benefits after a fatal work accident. The exact type of benefits you could obtain will depend on Florida state laws, the employer’s insurer and the coverage provided by the policy.
In most cases, qualifying loved ones can obtain financial help to cover funeral expenses and to have some financial support for the household. The amount of compensation can depend on the aforementioned factors as well as how the accident occurred. For example, if an employer or insurer believes that misconduct on the part of a worker contributed to the incident, the insurer could deny a claim or offer a low amount of compensation.
How can you get what you need?
Because dealing with insurance companies at any time can be tricky, you certainly want to have the right help. Fortunately, an experienced workers’ compensation attorney could help you navigate the process of applying for benefits after the tragic loss of your loved one. Having this support may also allow you to focus more of your time on working through your grief than having to deal with paperwork and roadblocks associated with pursuing workers’ compensation.