Under the Federal Employees Compensation Act (FECA), certain surviving family members are entitled to death benefits when a federal worker is killed on the job or dies because of an occupational illness. Here’s what’s available under the law:
- Surviving spouses—The amount paid to a surviving spouse depends on whether or not there were children eligible for benefits. If there are no children, the surviving spouse is entitled to one half of the decedent’s regular pay. If there are minor children, the surviving spouse may receive 45% of the decedent’s regular pay plus 15% of the regular pay for each child, up to a maximum of 75% of the deceased’s regular pay.
- If a surviving spouse is under the age of 55, he/she will receive monthly benefits until death or remarriage. Upon remarriage, the spouse is entitled to a lump sum payment equal to two years compensation. However, if the surviving spouse is over the age of 55 at the time of the worker’s death, he/she will receive compensation for life, regardless of marital status.
- Eligible children only—If the deceased worker had no living spouse, but had an eligible child, the surviving child will receive 40% of the deceased’s regular pay. If there is more than one eligible child, and additional 15% will be paid per child, up to a maximum of 75%.
- Orphaned children are entitled to benefits until death, marriage or until they become 18, whichever comes first. If, however, an eligible child goes to college, benefits will continue until college is completed, or until the child is 23 years of age.
- Funeral expenses—FECA pays a fixed amount to defray the costs of a funeral. In addition, if the federal worker dies away from home, the cost of transporting the body back to his or her home will be paid in full.
Contact the Attorneys at Uliase & Uliase
At Uliase & Uliase, we have a thorough understanding of the federal workers‘ compensation laws. If you have been hurt on the job and want to schedule an appointment, contact our office online or call us at 856-310-9002. We will meet with you weekdays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. We offer a free consultation for injured workers.