When a worker dies during the course and scope of performing his or her job duties, close family members -- and financial dependents -- may be able to pursue workers' compensation claims to receive death benefits via the Georgia workers' compensation system. These benefits, which are usually paid via regular installments, can serve as a lifeline of financial support to family members who may be struggling after a primary contributor to their financial security passes away unexpectedly.
The monetary amount that family members can receive as death benefits will depend primarily on the level of income previously earned by the deceased worker. The percentage of income that will be receivable varies based on state law, but typically the total death benefit payments will be approximately two-thirds of the workers' past average income. Minimums and maximums will also apply to this amount. In some cases, family members may be able to receive a lump sum payment rather than payments in installments.
As for who can receive workers' compensation death benefits, the family members who lived with the deceased and depended on him or her financially will usually be the primary beneficiaries. However, in some cases, when a financial dependent did not live with the deceased worker, that financial dependent can apply to receive death benefits as well.
If your close loved one died in a work-related accident, you may want to explore whether you are eligible to receive death benefits under Georgia workers' compensation laws. It's important to investigate your eligibility as soon as possible to prevent the time limitations on these claims from running out.