Louisiana work injuries that result in an employee’s death are the most serious claims an experienced workers’ compensation law firm can handle.
At Wank Law, we understand no amount of compensation can replace a beloved family member. And we know many families may never make a financial recovery from the loss of a primary wage earner, particularly without experienced legal help.
We focus exclusively on the representation of workers and families dealing with serious and fatal injuries as a result of Louisiana work accidents. And we offer free and confidential consultations - day or night - at our offices in New Orleans, Raceland and Covington, or by telephone or video conferencing.
Those dealing with the death of a family member in a work accident may not receive adequate help from Louisiana workers’ compensation insurance benefits. The workers’ compensation system is an insurance system that provides benefits to most employees who are injured or killed on the job, regardless of who was at fault.
While it alleviates the need to prove fault or liability on the part of an employer, it also protects employers, in most cases, from being sued for personal injury or wrongful death. Unfortunately, it does a better job of helping injured workers than those who are killed on the job. However, our experienced legal team will work to win all of the benefits to which you are entitled, through both workers’ compensation and other sources.
Early consultation with an experienced death benefit attorney can allow for thorough review of your case. In limited circumstances, a wrongful death claim may still be made against an employer. In other cases, a third party may be pursued for damages if it can be proven that party’s actions or inactions contributed to accidental death. Such parties may include any at-fault party not employed by a victim’s employer, including drivers, property owners, other contractors, or the owners, operators or manufacturer of equipment involved in the accident.
Under Louisiana workers’ compensation law, a deceased workers’ family is entitled to weekly or monthly benefits, as outlined by law, or may be eligible for a one-time payment of $75,000 as well as money to cover funeral and burial benefits of up to $8.500.
In all cases, maximizing benefits available through workers’ compensation is the first job of your Louisiana work injury law firm.
Those eligible for benefits include:
The $75,000 benefit is available to the biological or adopted children of a deceased worker, or a deceased workers’ parents if there are no children.
The primary Louisiana statutes for death benefits are La. R.S. 23:1231, La. R.S. 23:1232, and La. R.S. 23:1233. These benefits are payable in accordance with state statute when death occurs within two years of the last treatment related to an accident or injury.
There are many challenges that commonly arise, not the least of which are the presence of step children, common-law spouses, same-sex marriages and other non-traditional family structures. In today’s world, such loved ones should be considered no less legitimate but are often required to fight for their rights under the law. In cases where more dependents are left, each must suffer a proportional reduction in benefits so that total paid benefits amount to no more than 65 percent of a decedent’s average wage at time of death.
Making a proper determination of an employee’s average wage is another factor that can significantly impact benefits. Additionally, dependents may be identified as either wholly dependent or partially dependent, with resulting benefits set by statutory formulas. Partial dependents are entitled to a reduced benefit based on their statutory eligibility multiplied by their percentage of dependency at the time of death.
In any case, these benefits will likely be inadequate when it comes to replacing a deceased loved one’s wages. Statutory guidelines range from 32.5 percent of wages for a widow or widower living alone, to 65 percent for a widow or widower with two or more children. This makes seeking any and all benefits to which you are entitled outside the workers’ compensation system a critical job of your chosen work injury law firm.
If you have been injured, call day or night for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your rights. Call 985-202-9907.
Indemnity/Lost Wages — weekly payments based upon your average weekly wage; you will receive 66% of your average weekly wage capped at a maximum rate
Medical and/or Death — covers all necessary and reasonable medical treatment, including doctors visits, diagnostic tests, hospital stays, surgery, physical therapy, etc.
Mileage Reimbursement — travel related expenses to and from health care provider, pharmacy, etc. Vocational Rehabilitation program designed to retrain you in an attempt to return you to work for your previous employer, or find new work.