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Accidental death benefits for deployed state employees

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in Human Resources

The families of New Jersey public employees who die while on active duty in the military now qualify for accidental death benefits.

Gov. Jon Corzine signed a law in March to extend the benefits, which traditionally had covered teachers, police officers, firefighters and government employees who died in car crashes or other accidents.

Kelley’s Law is named after Army Reserve Maj. Dwayne M. Kelley, a state police detective who died in a June 2008 bombing in Baghdad.

Of the 3,000 New Jersey reservists who have been activated since 2001, more than 400 are police officers or firefighters, according to the New Jersey Army and Air National Guard.

The new benefit will become part of an existing state accidental benefits law that pays surviving spouses a pension of 70% of the deceased employee’s final compensation. If there is no spouse, the employee’s children split a pension.

Contact: Mark Perkiss, director of communications, at (609) 292-6219.

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