Alaska Survivor Benefits

Survivor BenefitsUpdated July 2011

ONE-TIME DEATH BENEFIT

Workers’ Comp pays a one-time benefit of $5,000 to surviving spouse and children.

For members covered under the Public Employees’ Retirement System (PERS): $2,000 life insurance benefit and a $5,000 accidental death benefit.

Contact:
Public Employees’ Retirement System
Alaska Department of Administration
Division of Retirement and Benefits
P.O. Box 11023
Juneau, AK 99811-0203
Phone: (907) 465-4460 or
Toll Free: (800) 821-2251
Website: doa.alaska.gov/drb/pers


WORKERS’ COMPENSATION

Career firefighters: For surviving spouse with no children, benefit is equal to 80% of the employee’s spendable weekly wage (gross less federal income and social security taxes). For surviving spouse with one child, 90% of the employee’s spendable weekly wage. For spouse with two or more children, 100% of the spendable weekly wage. For no spouse and one or more children, 100% of the employee’s spendable weekly wage. Wages are subject to the minimum and maximum benefit caps, which are set by the Alaska Workers’ Compensation Board each year. Upon remarriage spouse receives two-year lump sum and benefits terminate. Benefits to spouse end 10 years after firefighter’s death unless spouse has reached age 52 or is permanently and totally disabled. Children eligible until age 19 or married; full-time students receive benefits regardless of age, for first four years following the firefighter’s death.

Volunteer firefighters: A political subdivision may elect to provide benefits and compensation to its volunteer firefighters. It must obtain insurance that would provide benefits and compensation at least equivalent to those provided by the state. If a volunteer firefighter is injured in the line of duty, the computation shall be based on the minimum gross weekly earnings paid a fulltime firefighter employed in the political subdivision where the injury occurred or other similar formula. It must be equal to or greater than the minimum wage computed on the basis of a 40-hour week.

Contact:
Workers’ Compensation Division of the Department of Labor
1111 West 8th St., Room 305
P.O. Box 115512
Juneau, AK 99801-5512
Phone: (907) 465-2790
Fax: (907) 465-2797
Website: labor.state.ak.us/wc

(Reference: Alaska Workers’ Compensation Act, AK Statutes 23-30-215; See also Workers’ Comp Bulletin 09-02, Death Benefits 2009)

FUNERAL BENEFIT

Maximum of $5,000 for burial expenses. Spouse and/or children also get a lump sum of $5,000.

Contact:
Workers’ Compensation Division of the Department of Labor
1111 West 8th St., Room 305
P.O. Box 115512
Juneau, AK 99801-5512
Phone: (907) 465-2790
Fax: (907) 465-2797
Website: labor.state.ak.us/wc


RETIREMENT/PENSION PLAN

Members of PERS who die from occupational causes: The eligible survivor receives a monthly pension. It is the greater of 50% of the gross salary or 75% of the normal retirement benefit the member would have received at retirement. The member does not have to be vested to qualify for occupational death benefits. The spouse is automatically the designated beneficiary. If there is no eligible spouse, children equally divide the pension.

Major medical insurance coverage is available to survivors who are receiving monthly PERS benefits and their dependents. This coverage ends when the benefit recipient dies or is no longer eligible to receive monthly PERS benefits.

For reliable information on Alaska death benefits for public employees see the PERS handbook, particularly page 34.

Contact:
Public Employees’ Retirement System
Alaska Department of Administration
Division of Retirement and Benefits
P.O. Box 11023
Juneau, AK 99811-0203
Phone: (907) 465-4460
Toll Free: or (800) 821-2251
Website: doa.alaska.gov/drb/pers


EDUCATION BENEFIT – CHILDREN

Provides tuition and fees to institutions in the University of Alaska system.

Also contact the business office at the specific campus of attendance within the University system.

Contact:
The Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education
3030 Vintage Blvd.
Juneau, AK 99801-7100
Phone: (907) 441-2962
Toll Free: (800) 441-2962
Website: akadvantage.alaska.gov


EDUCATION BENEFIT – SPOUSE

Provides tuition and fees to institutions in the University of Alaska system.

Also contact the business office at the specific campus of attendance within the University system.

Contact:
The Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education
3030 Vintage Blvd.
Juneau, AK 99801-7100
Phone: (907) 441-2962
Toll Free: (800) 441-2962
Website: akadvantage.alaska.gov


NON-PROFIT OR PRIVATE ORGANIZATIONS

Contact:
Alaska State Firefighters Association
P.O. Box 22092
Juneau, AK 99802
Phone: (907) 841-4757
Toll Free: (800) 843-1950
Website: alaskastatefirefighters.org
Association members receive a $2,000.00 death and disability benefit.


 

Disclaimer: The material contained in the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation Survivor Benefits website is not the result of legal research, but rather is based on a scan of public documents. We have made every effort to be accurate and timely, but errors may exist. The material on this website is advisory only and should not be cited as evidence or proof that a benefit exists or that our facts are accurate. Always consult the decedent’s fire department for benefits assistance, or a benefits’ attorney. If, in the course of your own research, you see errors of fact, or new benefit information, please pass this information along to the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation.