Corporate critics who say there is not enough connection between performance and executive pay may be gravely concerned to learn that many execs will keep getting sky-high bonuses when they're 6 feet under. A Wall Street Journal review finds dozens of CEOs will receive "golden coffin" payments if they die in office, sometimes in excess of $100 million.
"We think the compensation has been grossly too high already," said a shareholder whose protests helped convince Comcast to nix plans to keep paying one exec $2 million for 5 years after his death. "There's no need to pay them more when they're dead." Counters an Occidental spokesman of its CEO's $101.9 million coffin: It "isn't a death benefit per se—it's what his family would get upon his death."