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Published on Monday, March 2, 2015

LEOFF benefits for remarried surviving spouse

HB 1194 allows a surviving spouse of a LEOFF 1 or 2 member killed in the line of duty to continue receiving worker’s compensation benefits even if the surviving spouse remarries. Last Friday, the House Appropriations Committee passed a substitute version of the bill providing that payments to remarried spouses are paid from the LEOFF system instead of the workers’ compensation system. The LEOFF 2 Board met on February 25 and voted to support this revised approach. AWC opposed the original version of the bill out of concerns that it could impact workers’ compensation rates for police and fire fighters, which have already seen double digit increases last year and proposed again this year. However, the substitute version of the bill pays for the cost of any benefits out of the LEOFF fund which has significant resources. AWC is now taking a neutral position on the bill since it will not likely have a fiscal impact.

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