Accidental Death and ACC

CollisionSince self-employed people are paying ACC levies, most expect their ACC Cover Plus or Cover PlusExtra to pay out when they have a personal injury. But they don’t give a thought to what would happen if that injury led to death. The government’s Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) website www.acc.co.nz explains that in the event of an accidental death from injury, ACC cover might not be provided, but if it is, the payment amount is determined using several factors.

The limitations in ACC payments when an injury causes death could put the loved ones you leave behind in financial disrepair. With life’s unexpected twists and turns, it’s important to have your finances in order, including having the proper private insurance to take care of your family when you are no longer able to do so. Affordable options include life insurance, income protection insurance and mortgage protection insurance..

How Much Support to Expect from ACC

The ACC’s weekly compensation for accidental death is very limited. Only dependents that relied on financial support from the person who died will be entitled to weekly compensation if the ACC cover is approved. Even then, the payment amount those dependents will receive is calculated using certain guidelines. The ACC will determine accidental death payments by calculating how much the deceased person would have received if he or she was injured and unable to work. Typically, the amount is 80% of the deceased’s earnings, which is further divided among the deceased person’s survivors. For example, a partner would receive 60% to 80% of the calculated amount, while each child or dependentunder the age of18 would receive up to 20% of the calculated amount. For those who qualify for accidental death weekly compensation, the support comes with an end date.

ACC also offers childcare payments following a parent’s death as a result of an injury. This support will help to cover caregiver costs for childcare for up to five years from the date of death or until the child turns 14 years old. Typically, it takes ACC 21 days to approve eligibility for childcare payments.

The timeframe for receiving accidental death ACC benefits varies, depending on how long it takes ACC to obtain details about the deceased person’s earnings and other information required. Typically, if the deceased’s dependents complete all the necessary forms, ACC will contact them when the accidental death claim has been approved. However, the waiting period could leave the deceased’s family will little or no financial support if there is no private insurance policy. Even more financially detrimental is if the weekly compensation claim is denied.

ACC Grants for Accidental Death Expenses

As part of the accidental death claim process, ACC will also contribute towards burial expenses via its funeral grant. This grant is awarded to the eligible estate of the person who died and paid directly to the funeral director after ACC receives a detailed invoice.

ACC also offers a survivor’s grant, which is a one-time payment to a partner, child and other dependents of the person who died as a result of an injury. The non-taxable payment is calculated based on the date of death.

Private Insurance as a Safety Net

Because ACC compensation is not definite when death occurs from an injury, private insurance is a crucial safety net to have. Even if survivors qualify for ACC compensation, payouts are limited and can cease before the deceased’s loved ones are financially stable. Keep in mind that ACC only pays for death from an injury, not an illness.

Unfortunately, self-employed people in New Zealand are often unable to pay for life insurance, income protection insurance, or mortgage protection insurance because they are paying high ACC levies. There are options available with ACC Cover PlusExtra where you can lower your ACC cover and the associated ACC levies and use the savings to buy more comprehensive coverage through a private insurance policy that will ensure your family is well protected when you die.

One way to determine how you can supplement ACC with private insurance is to take advantage of our rates comparison. It’s free and available 24/7. Simply provide the information requested and you will receive coverage details and rates from up to seven insurance companies. With this information, you can compare the extent of cover provided versus the rates to determine what works best for your lifestyle and budget. We can also help you devise an insurance strategy that complements your ACC cover and can even save you money while providing comprehensive insurance cover.

No one knows when an accident will occur that can change yours and your family’s lives forever. Get started today in securing the proper insurance coverage so you can rest easy knowing your family is financially secure for whatever life may bring.