Healy Scanlon Law Firm

Are death benefits payable for an IL construction site injury?


In Illinois, work-related deaths occur due to a variety of reasons, such as construction accidents, defective roof structures on the construction site, falls from heights, unsafe ladders and scaffolding supplied by the employer or dangerous tools used by the employee.

A construction vehicle injury, trench collapse or other such incident can result in the death of the employee. An Illinois construction site injury resulting in death is one of the more unfortunate fates that a worker and his or her near and dear ones can suffer. However, legal recourse is available for survivors of the deceased in order to claim compensation for expenses related to the misfortune.

The law provides benefits in the form of workers' compensation to employees, or their representatives, who have suffered injuries in the course of employment, diseases related to the occupation, such as asbestos exposure, and work-related deaths. These benefits, in general, can be claimed without determining fault on the part of the employee, as long as the incident occurred during the course of the individual's employment.

The benefits that relatives and survivors of a deceased worker can claim are called "death benefits." Death or survivor's benefits include burial benefits, too. Children of the deceased who are under 18 years of age and a deceased worker's spouse are entitled to survivor's benefits.

If the deceased has no spouse or children who are eligible for benefits, the same can be given to completely dependent parents. If the parents of the deceased are not completely dependent, then the amount can be given to any persons who can be proven to be at least 50 percent dependent on the deceased for financial assistance.

Source: Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission, "Handbook on Workers' Compensation and Occupational Diseases," accessed Nov.13, 2014

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