Do Surviving Family Members Have Any Recourse after a Workplace Fatality?

When you’ve contracted an illness or sustained an injury on the job in New York, you know that you have a right to pursue compensation for lost wages, as well as any unreimbursed medical expenses while you are unable to work. But what are the rights of your surviving family members if you die from an occupational illness or are killed in a workplace accident? Can your dependents seek compensation for the loss of support, the loss of companionship or consortium, or any medical bills incurred because of your death? Yes, they can.

The New York workers’ compensation laws allow a wrongful death claim to be filed through the workers’ compensation system. That claim may be filed by a surviving spouse, a child or by the estate of the deceased. The law even provides benefits if the decedent was unmarried and had no children. The parent of such a worker may file what is known as a “no-dependency” claim, and may also seek damages for any funeral or burial services.

Furthermore, you don’t have to die on the job for your survivors to have a claim. If you can establish that the cause of your death was related to your work—you died of injuries suffered at work or you contracted an illness because of exposure to toxic substances on the job—your beneficiaries can seek compensation for your death.

Wrongful Death Claims Arising in the Workplace

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Queens | NYC | Brooklyn | Bronx Workers’ Compensation Attorneys