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Wisconsin Workers' Compensation Legal Library


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102.475 Death benefit; law enforcement and correctional officers, fire fighters, rescue squad members, diving team members, national or state guard members and emergency management personnel.

(1) SPECIAL BENEFIT. If the deceased employee is a law enforcement officer, correctional officer, fire fighter, rescue squad member, diving team member, national guard member or state defense force member on state active duty as described in s. 102.07 (9) or if a deceased person is an employee or volunteer performing emergency management activities under ch. 323 during a state of emergency or a circumstance described in s. 323.12 (2) (c) , who sustained an accidental injury while performing services growing out of and incidental to that employment or volunteer activity so that benefits are payable under s. 102.46 or 102.47 (1) , the department shall voucher and pay from the appropriation under s. 20.445 (1) (aa) a sum equal to 75 percent of the primary death benefit as of the date of death, but not less than $50,000 to the persons wholly dependent upon the deceased. For purposes of this subsection, dependency shall be determined under ss. 102.49 and 102.51 .

(2)
P AYMENTS TO DEPENDENTS. (a) If there are more than 4 persons who are wholly dependent upon the deceased employee an additional benefit of $2,000 shall be paid for each dependent in excess of 4.
(b)
If there is more than one person who is wholly dependent upon the deceased employee, the benefits under this section shall be apportioned between such dependents on the same proportional basis as the primary death benefit.
(c)
Notwithstanding sub. (1) , if there are partial dependents of the deceased employee who are entitled to benefits under s. 102.48 , they shall be entitled to such portion of the benefit determined under sub. (1) that their partial dependency benefit bears to the primary benefit payable to one wholly dependent upon the deceased. No payment to a partial dependent shall be less than $1,000.
(3)
D ISPUTES. In case of dispute, dependents may file applications as provided in s. 102.17 , and ss. 102.17 to 102.27 shall apply. In such case, if the claim for a primary death benefit is compromised, any claim under this section shall be compromised on the same proportional basis. The attorney general shall represent the interests of the state in case of such dispute.
(5)
M INORS. Benefits due to minors under this section may be paid as provided in s. 102.45 .
(6)
P ROOF. In administering this section the department or the division may require reasonable proof of birth, marriage, domestic partnership under ch. 770 , relationship, or dependency.
(7)
N OT TO AFFECT OTHER RIGHTS, BENEFITS OR COMPENSATION. The compensation provided for in this section is in addition to, and not exclusive of, any pension rights, death benefits or other compensation otherwise payable by law.
(8) D EFINITIONS. As used in this section:
(a)
" Correctional officer" means any person employed by the state or any political subdivision as a guard or officer whose principal duties are supervision and discipline of inmates at a penal

institution, prison, jail, house of correction or other place of penal detention. (am) " Diving team member" means a member of a legally organized diving team.

(b)
" Fire fighter" means any person employed by the state or any political subdivision as a member or officer of a fire department or a member of a volunteer department, including the state fire marshal and deputies.
(c)
" Law enforcement officer" means any person employed by the state or any political subdivision for the purpose of detecting and preventing crime and enforcing laws or ordinances and who is authorized to make arrests for violations of the laws or ordinances the person is employed to enforce, whether that enforcement authority extends to all laws or ordinances or is limited to specific laws or ordinances.
(d)
" Political subdivision" includes counties, municipalities and municipal corporations.
(dm) " Rescue squad member" means a member of a legally organized rescue squad.
(e)
" State" means the state of Wisconsin and its departments, divisions, boards, bureaus, commissions, authorities and colleges and universities.

History: 1975 c. 274 , 421 ; 1977 c. 29 ss. 1029m to 1029s , 1650 ; 1977 c. 48 , 203 , 418 ; 1979 c. 110 s. 60 (11) ; 1979 c. 221 ; 1981 c. 325 ; 1983 a. 98 , 189 ; 1985 a. 29 ; 1987 a. 63 ; 1991 a. 85 ; 1993 a. 81 ; 1995 a. 247 ; 1999 a. 14 ; 2009 a. 28 , 42 ; 2015 a.

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