In Illinois and all other states, a death that occurs while the decedent is at work is included within the state's compensation laws. Workers' compensation will automatically kick in when the employee dies while performing work duties, and that applies regardless of who is at fault in causing the workplace accident. The compensation law provides for the payments of death benefits to the deceased worker's next of kin.
The benefits usually include medical expenses, funeral and burial costs, along with the payment to the family of weekly or monthly monetary benefits based on the statutory formula that applies. Under certain circumstances, it may be possible for the family to obtain a lump-sum settlement amount in lieu of receiving weekly or monthly payments. However, that is a risky venture that should not be attempted without the services and consultation of an experienced workers' compensation attorney.