texas 6796059 640

Chart View: Texas Distribution of Death Benefits

30 Nov, 2023 Frank Ferreri

texas 6796059 640
                               

Austin, TX (WorkersCompensation.com) -- Figuring out where death benefits go in the case of a worker doesn't seem like a tough ask, but things can get tricky, depending on who survives. Thus, states, like Texas, have rules spelling out who gets what and when.

This chart covers how Texas doles out workers' compensation death benefits.

ScenariosDistribution
If there is an eligible child or grandchild and an eligible spouseHalf of the death benefits shall be paid to the eligible spouse and half shall be paid in equal shares to the eligible children. 
If an eligible child has predeceased the employeeDeath benefits that would have been paid to that child shall be paid in equal shares per stirpes to the children of the deceased child.
Definition of "per stirpes"Proportionately divided between beneficiaries according to their deceased ancestor's share. 
If there is an eligible spouse and no eligible child or grandchildAll the death benefits shall be paid to the eligible spouse.
If there is an eligible child or grandchild and no eligible spouseThe death benefits shall be paid to the eligible children or grandchildren.
If there is no eligible spouse, no eligible child, and no eligible grandchildThe death benefits shall be paid in equal shares to surviving dependents of the deceased employee who are parents, stepparents, siblings, or grandparents of the deceased.
If there is no eligible spouse, no eligible child, and no eligible grandchild, and there are no surviving dependents of the deceased employee who are parents, siblings, or grandparents of the deceasedThe death benefits shall be paid in equal shares to surviving eligible parents of the deceased. 
In this case, payment of death benefits may not exceed one payment per household.
Total payments may not exceed 104 weeks regardless of the number of surviving eligible parents.
Eligibility requirements for parentsTo be eligible to receive death benefits an eligible parent must file with the division or insurance carrier a claim for those benefits not later than the first anniversary of the date of the injured employee's death from the compensable injury.
The claim must designate all eligible parents and necessary information for payment to the eligible parents.
The insurance carrier is not liable for payment to any eligible parent not designated on the claim.
Failure to file a claim in the time required bars the claim unless good cause exists for the failure to file a claim.
If an employee is not survived by legal beneficiaries or eligible parentsThe death benefits shall be paid to the subsequent injury fund.
Definition of "eligible child"A child of a deceased employee if the child is:
+ A minor;
+ Enrolled as a full-time student in an accredited educational institution and is less than 25 years of age; or
+ A dependent of the deceased employee at the time of the employee's death.
Definition of "eligible grandchild"A grandchild of a deceased employee who is a dependent of the deceased employee and whose parent is not an eligible child.
Definition of "eligible spouse"The surviving spouse of a deceased employee unless the spouse abandoned the employee for longer than the year immediately preceding the death without good cause.
Definition of "eligible parent"The mother or the father of a deceased employee, including an adoptive parent or a stepparent. The term does not include a parent whose parental rights have been terminated.
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    About The Author

    • Frank Ferreri

      Frank Ferreri, M.A., J.D. covers workers' compensation legal issues. He has published books, articles, and other material on multiple areas of employment, insurance, and disability law. Frank received his master's degree from the University of South Florida and juris doctor from the University of Florida Levin College of Law.

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