Sec. 31-306b. Written notice of potential eligibility for death benefits. (a) Not later than thirty days after the date an employer or insurer discontinues paying weekly disability benefits to an injured employee under the provisions of this chapter due to the death of the injured employee, the employer or insurer shall send by registered or certified mail to the last address to which the injured employee’s workers’ compensation benefit checks were mailed, a written notice stating, in simple language, that dependents of the deceased employee may be eligible for death benefits under this chapter, subject to the filing and benefit eligibility requirements of this chapter.
(b) Not later than October 1, 1998, the chairman of the Workers’ Compensation Commission shall develop a standard form that may be used by employers and insurers to provide the notice required under subsection (a) of this section.
(c) The failure of an employer or insurer to comply with the notice requirements of subsection (a) of this section shall not excuse a dependent of a deceased employee from making a claim for compensation within the time limits prescribed by subsection (a) of section 31-294c unless the dependent of the deceased employee demonstrates, in the opinion of the commissioner, that he was prejudiced by such failure to comply. Each dependent who, in the opinion of the commissioner, demonstrates that he was prejudiced by the failure of an employer or insurer to comply with the notice requirements of subsection (a) of this section shall be granted an extension of time in which to file a notice of claim for compensation with the deceased employee’s employer or insurer pursuant to section 31-294c, but such extension shall not exceed the period of time equal to the interim between the end of the thirty-day period set forth in subsection (a) of this section and the date the notice required under said subsection was actually mailed.
(P.A. 98-104, S. 1.)