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He was the most hardworking person you knew, the first to arrive on the job and the last to leave. He was the one to work overtime to get the job done. He embodied the New York spirit.

Perhaps he was an immigrant who came to the concrete jungle to make a better life for his family. You never went without a thing, as he always ensured you had everything you needed.

Now he’s gone. The emotional void is palpable, but the financial void is deafening, too. The primary breadwinner is gone, but the bills remain. Picking up the pieces will be challenging, but we are here to help.

The lawyers at O’Connor Law know that grieving family members often have a lot on their plates after a loved one passes away and that navigating the paperwork and procedures required to obtain death benefits can leave them exhausted and overburdened. When you work with us, we’ll ensure that everything is done correctly from the beginning to produce a successful claim.


Workers Compensation Pays For Benefits Upon Death in the State of New York

The New York workers’ compensation legislation provides death payments if a work-related injury results in death. This is enshrined in the NY Workers Compensation Law §16. It is understood that the loss of a family member due to a workplace accident will result in a gap in family wages.

Fatality can be said to be work-related if it results from a specific accident or occupational disease, or condition. A New York State Workers’ Compensation Board oversees the administration of compensation.

Potential Causes of Death

Death on the job can happen as a result of:

  • A fatal catastrophe that occurs suddenly and without warning;
  • Complications from the injury that lead to death after receiving medical attention for a while; and
  • The accident’s cumulative effects and a condition’s deterioration over time lead to death later.

Calculation of Workers Compensation Death Benefits in New York

Knowing how death benefits are distributed is necessary to understand how workers’ compensation is determined in the event of a death. Depending on your connection to the deceased and whether other potential beneficiaries exist, various beneficiaries are entitled to varying sums.

The deceased’s dependents may be eligible to receive weekly payments if they pass away at work due to an injury that occurred in the course of that person’s employment. Two-thirds of the person’s average weekly earnings for the year before death would be covered by the weekly payments. The weekly benefit amount is limited to a set amount.

The surviving spouse will get this ⅔ of the deceased’s average weekly wage each week until death or remarriage if there are no dependent children and the deceased leaves behind a spouse. The spouse is entitled to a lump sum payout upon remarriage equal to two years’ worth of the deceased’s average weekly wage.

If a deceased person leaves behind one or more dependent children but no spouse, the dependent children will split the ⅔ equally each week. The spouse will receive ⅔ of the average weekly wage per week if the deceased leaves behind a spouse and one or more dependent children, and the remaining 30% will be divided among the dependent children.

Calculations of benefits can get quite complicated. It’s best to touch base with a death benefits attorney in New York to discuss your specific circumstances.

These Are Some Resources To Make Your Claim:

NYS Workers’ Compensation Board

Advocate for Injured Workers

328 State Street

Schenectady, NY 12305-2318


The funeral home completes this form.

This form is completed by the worker’s most recent physician, who details how the deceased’s death was directly caused by either the deceased’s employment or a prior work-related injury.

Return the completed forms to:

Workers’ Compensation Board

Centralized Mailing Address

PO Box 5205

Binghamton, NY 13902-5205


Our Location

O’Connor Law PLLC

7 Woodland Ave Ste 10,

Larchmont, NY 10538


In the wake of work-related death, we help the families of wounded workers submit their claims and pursue benefits. If legal action is necessary, we are ready to do everything we can to guarantee that benefits are paid promptly and in full. Make an appointment with us right now to receive a free introductory consultation.


Our legal team has a detailed knowledge of New York workers’ compensation and Social Security disability law, including a unique perspective gained from our founder’s past experience serving as defense counsel for dozens of workers’ compensation insurance firms. You can rest easy knowing that we have the skills necessary to handle your claim.


Our firm’s reputation is unparalleled throughout the Big Apple. When you choose to work with us, you’re getting the benefit of respected representation from one of the leading workers’ compensation and Social Security disability firms in the state.


At O’Connor Law, we understand how vital our work is to your future. We’re committed to fighting for your right to benefits while providing you with the support you need to navigate this difficult time in your life. You will always feel like you are our top priority.


We’re compassionate and empathetic, but far from being a pushover. We’re an iron fist in a velvet glove and will aggressively advocate for your interests—even if that means litigation is necessary to protect your right to benefits.

Protecting New Yorkers is what we do.

Our Process

Discuss your case (for free)

  • Meet briefly to learn more
  • Discuss your injuries or disability
  • Determine if we can help

We file your claim

  • Pay nothing upfront
  • No fee until you win
  • Feel confident with a legal team in your corner

We deal with the insurance company

  • We respond to requests and negotiate on your behalf
  • If they don’t play ball, we fight it out in court

You get the outcome you deserve

  • Get the compensation you’re entitled to
  • Ditch the stress
  • Get back to normal and living your life

Frequently Asked Questions

Who can bring the claim?

According to New York law, the surviving family members of all eligible working individuals may submit a claim through the state’s workers’ compensation system. This includes the surviving spouse, child, mother, or estate may do so.

What benefits are paid out?

Typically, families are entitled to the following benefits:

  • Hospital/ medical bills
  • Funeral costs
  • Replacement of lost wages for the decedent’s dependents

What if the person had no spouse or children?

N.Y. Work. Comp. Law §16(4-b) allows a payment of $50,000 to the surviving parents of a legally employed worker in the absence of a surviving spouse or children. If neither parent is alive, the deceased person’s estate receives the payout.

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