How Can Workers’ Compensation Laws Affect Wrongful Death Claims?
Workers’ compensation laws prevent any injured workers from filing personal injury lawsuits against their employers in court. As soon as you decide to make your workers’ compensation claim, you waive the right to file a lawsuit. This means injured employees have to carefully consider whether they have a case for negligence against the employer and whether the potential compensation would be worth pursuing a claim.
But what happens if the worker died as a result of the accident and had been set to receive workers’ compensation? This depends mostly on where you live, as the way in which workers’ compensation laws apply to wrongful death cases varies from state to state.
In North Carolina, workers’ compensation rules may apply if an employee is killed on the job or whose death is caused by a work-related injury. In some cases, family members may be entitled to the full value of the deceased worker’s lost wages as well as up to $10,000 in burial and funeral expenses. If you are a family member, spouse, or child of a deceased worker, you should contact one of our skilled workers’ compensation attorneys immediately, because oftentimes more than one person will assert a claim to benefits. Acting quickly is also important because workers’ compensation claims involve strictly enforced time limitations. In addition to workers’ compensation benefits, you may be able to file a civil wrongful death lawsuit with the court if the death involved wrongdoing or negligence by a responsible party.
For more information on the intersection of workers’ compensation laws and wrongful death claims, contact the experienced North Carolina attorneys at Lanier Law Group.