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What Happens to Workers’ Compensation Benefits After a Divorce?

If your spouse was injured on the job and receives workers’ compensation benefits, what happens to those benefits should you go through a divorce? The answer depends on the circumstances surrounding the claim and the terms of your divorce. However, there are several different ways that courts will view workers’ compensation as they work to create divorce settlements.

  • Treatment as wages. In some cases, workers’ compensation benefits may be treated similarly to wages. In this scenario, any benefits received after the divorce goes into effect would no longer be considered marital property, meaning that the recipient does not have to split the benefits with his or her ex spouse.
  • Treatment as a personal injury award. Sometimes courts classify workers’ compensation benefits as personal injury awards. Any payments for lost wages or medical expenses that occurred during the marriage would therefore be considered marital property, while payments outside the marriage are solely the property of the benefit recipient.
  • Treatment as disability pay. Circumstances may arise in which the court considers the benefits from a workers’ compensation claim to be similar to disability pa. This means that any compensation given during the marriage is the property of both spouses, while any benefits received after the divorce are the sole property of the injured party.
  • Treatment based on when the benefits were awarded. The most common case in which people have to split all workers’ compensation benefits as marital property is when the court decides to rule primarily based on when the right to the benefits was acquired. If the benefits were awarded during marriage, then it constitutes marital property and there would be a split in those benefits.

Contact a trusted California workers’ compensation attorney at Tous Law Group for more information about how these benefits would be divided after a divorce.

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