Who Qualifies as a Relative in North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Death Cases

Employees who die before they can get any or all of their benefits may be able to have family members such as a spouse, children, and parents receive these benefits. Some of these family relationships are not clear-cut. However, North Carolina’s workers’ compensation law does have its own set of definitions.

  • Child: Child, in addition to a naturally born child, includes a child conceived before death but born after the employee’s death. A child adopted prior to the injury is included. Stepchildren and children born out of wedlock (and acknowledged by the decedent before death) are included if they were dependent on the deceased. Married children are not included unless they were completely dependent on the deceased.
  • Grandchild: A child (as defined above) of a child (as defined above);
  • Brother and sister: Includes natural siblings, step-siblings, and half-siblings as well as siblings by adoption. It doesn’t include married siblings unless they were wholly dependent on the worker/employee.
  • To qualify as a child, grandchild, or sibling, the person has to have been under 18 at the time of the employee’s death.
  • Parents: Natural parents, stepparents, parents through adoption, parents-in-law, and anyone who stood in place of the parent for more than three years prior to death provided they were dependent on the injured employee.
  • Widow: Only a spouse who was living with the decedent or dependent on support at the time of death or living apart for a justifiable reason such as desertion.
  • Adoption: Adoption means a legal adoption prior to the date of the injury.

Attorney Joe Miller helps the families of deceased workers

While we know that nothing can erase the pain and suffering resulting from the tragic loss of a loved one, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation law does take care of the family members and dependents of deceased workers. Attorney Joe Miller at Joe Miller Law, Ltd., will work to make sure the families of workplace accident victims get payment for burial bills, any medical bills that were necessary because of the accident and the right amount and share of lost wages the worker lost. Contact us today at (888) 694-1671 for the compassionate, understanding help you need in this difficult circumstance.