Death Benefits in Illinois Workers’ Compensation

Jay Johnson

Each year, thousands of people die as a result of work related accidents throughout the country.  In Illinois, the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act protects the families of victims of such devastating events by mandating life supporting benefits to the victim’s survivors.

The first death benefit is the payment of medical bills related to the life-ending injury.  The employer must pay these charges. A family suffering from such devastating loss are not stuck with mountains of bills that may have been incurred during life-saving efforts.

The second death benefit that Illinois law mandates is the payment of burial expenses.  Illinois law requires that the employer pay $8,000.00 for these expenses.

The final death benefit that Illinois law mandates is weekly compensation.  The surviving spouse and children of a worker killed in a work related accident generally are entitled to weekly benefits of 2/3 of the victim’s average weekly wage.  The benefit continues for 25 years or $500,000.00, whichever is greater.

In the event that a spouse remarries, he or she is entitled to an immediate two-year lump payment.  The weekly death benefits end.  The surviving children are entitled to benefits until they turn 18 years of age.  If they are enrolled as a full-time student, they are entitled to benefits until the age of 25.

In certain circumstances, dependent parents or other dependents also may be entitled to death benefits. 

Workplace fatalities are not limited to traumatic events.  Workplace fatalities also can be caused by exposures to environmental toxins such as chemicals, radioactive agents, and coal dust.  Heart attacks and strokes that lead to death, even in people who may have had preexisting (conditions), are work related if some factor of the victim’s job, such as exposure to extreme temperatures or physical activity, (brought on) the heart attack or stroke. Importantly, for first responders or essential workers that die from COVID-19, Illinois law presumes that such workers got the virus from their workplace exposure.  The families of these workers are entitled to the same death benefits.

Wrongful Death Attorneys

Contact our team to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced and compassionate wrongful death attorneys. Call (630) 585-2320 or fill out an online contact form to get started.


I recommend Jay Johnson and Woodruff Johnson & Evans. Jay Johnson is a real trailblazer in the work-related injury process. 10 STARS!

My attorney, Jay Johnson, was efficient and there for me when I needed help with my work-related injury. Whenever I had an issue related to my employers’ insurance adjuster, he took care of it. Jay protected my rights when I was wrongfully charged medical bills and collectors. Jay always made himself available when I had  […]


El Sr. Jay Johnson fue genial. Me guió paso a paso a través de su proceso. Lo recomendaría en caso de alguna lesión laboral.

El Sr. Jay Johnson fue genial. Fue muy receptivo. Respondió a todas mis preguntas. Siempre encontraba tiempo para devolverme la llamada cuando no estaba disponible. Me guió paso a paso a través de su proceso. Lo recomendaría en caso de alguna lesión laboral.

Rodrigo G.

Work Compensation Attorney Leandro Alhambra Fought Hard For My Case. I Highly Recommend Him. Great Communication.

Leandro Alhambra at Woodruff, Johnson & Evans did an excellent job. From the time I first contacted him, he was professional and caring. He kept me informed even during the pandemic and he fought to get me a good settlement. I recommend him highly!

Edward P.

I Got Hurt at Work and Hired Russell Haugen to Take On Workers Comp for Me! I Highly Recommend This Law Firm.

I got hurt at work and my employer workers comp has a history of giving hurt employees a “Run Around.” Well, my workers comp “kept” loosing my Doctors orders for physical therapy. After a couple of weeks of this “Run Around” I contacted Russell. It was approximately 20 minutes after speaking to Russell, and my […]

Joseph H.

I highly recommend attorney Jay Johnson to anyone facing work comp issues!

Jay Johnson was an amazing attorney. Whenever I had a question, however little it was, I’d always hear back from him either that same day, or the following morning. I really felt he represented me very well. I’d highly recommend him to anyone who has even a question about their case!

Holly B.

Mr. Russell Haugen is the best personal injury attorney in the entire Chicago area!

In my opinion, Mr. Russell Haugen is the best personal injury attorney in the Chicago area. He is very professional and very hard working person for his clients. His knowledge allowed me to have a good ending for my case. He was awesome to work with. The process took several months but the settled was […]

Barbara I.

Great Law Firm to Work With! They Stay On Top Of Everything! Thanks So Much!

They are on top of everything. Great people to work with! Thank you so much for everything you done for me.

Deanna S.

I’m so glad I hired this firm when I was hurt at work! They got my work comp checks coming in!

I hired this firm when I got hurt at work. I’m glad I did because my company wasn’t sending any checks. Leandro got my checks coming after talking to workers compensation. The work comp company wasn’t easy to deal with. I’m glad I could relax and let Leandro and Kristal go after them. It took […]

Brian M

Excellent Professional Service From Personal Injury Attorney Dexter Evans!

Very good and professional service I received from Dexter.

Jaime G.

Jay Johnson was very responsive and handled everything. He fought hard to me and won my case. Thanks Jay!

Very responsive. Always called back and always had an answer to my questions and concerns. Jay handled everything and I just sat back and waited for results. I’ve seen him fight for friends who went through the same situation I did and they all have nothing but good things to say about him. Hopefully I […]

Elizabeth V
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