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Presumptive Disability Law in California
 
CODE PART:
 
California Statutes
Labor Code
3200-3219 Workman's Compensation

Government Code
31720-31755.3 Disability Retirement

California Legislative Website
 
 
DESCRIPTION:
 
Labor Code
3212.1.
  1. This section applies to active firefighting members, whether volunteers, partly paid, or fully paid, of all of the following fire departments:
    1. a fire department of a city, county, city and county, district, or other public or municipal corporation or political subdivision,
    2. a fire department of the University of California and the California State University,
    3. the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, and
    4. a county forestry or firefighting department or unit. This section also applies to peace officers, as defined in Section 830.1, subdivision (a) of Section 830.2, and subdivisions (a) and (b) of Section 830.37, of the Penal Code, who are primarily engaged in active law enforcement activities.
  2. The term "injury," as used in this division, includes cancer, including leukemia, that develops or manifests itself during a period in which any member described in subdivision (a) is in the service of the department or unit, if the member demonstrates that he or she was exposed, while in the service of the department or unit, to a known carcinogen as defined by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, or as defined by the director.
  3. The compensation that is awarded for cancer shall include full hospital, surgical, medical treatment, disability indemnity, and death benefits, as provided by this division.
  4. The cancer so developing or manifesting itself in these cases shall be presumed to arise out of and in the course of the employment. This presumption is disputable and may be controverted by evidence that the primary site of the cancer has been established and that the carcinogen to which the member has demonstrated exposure is not reasonably linked to the disabling cancer. Unless so controverted, the appeals board is bound to find in accordance with the presumption. This presumption shall be extended to a member following termination of service for a period of three calendar months for each full year of the requisite service, but not to exceed 60 months in any circumstance, commencing with the last date actually worked in the specified capacity.
  5. The amendments to this section enacted during the 1999 portion of the 1999-2000 Regular Session shall be applied to claims for benefits filed or pending on or after January 1, 1997, including, but not limited to, claims for benefits filed on or after that date that have previously been denied, or that are being appealed following denial.
3212.8.
(a) In the case of members of a sheriff’s office, of police or fire departments of cities, counties, cities and counties, districts, or other public or municipal corporations or political subdivisions, or individuals described in Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 830) of Title 3 of Part 2 of the Penal Code, whether those persons are volunteer, partly paid, or fully paid, and in the case of active firefighting members of the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or of any county forestry or firefighting department or unit, whether voluntary, fully paid, or partly paid, excepting those whose principal duties are clerical or otherwise do not clearly fall within the scope of active law enforcement service or active firefighting services, such as stenographers, telephone operators, and other office workers, the term “injury” as used in this division, includes a blood-borne infectious disease or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus skin infection when any part of the blood-borne infectious disease or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus skin infection develops or manifests itself during a period while that person is in the service of that office, staff, division, department, or unit. The compensation that is awarded for a blood-borne infectious disease or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus skin infection shall include, but not be limited to, full hospital, surgical, medical treatment, disability indemnity, and death benefits, as provided by the workers’ compensation laws of this state.

Government Code
31720.5.
If a safety member, a fireman member, or a member in active law enforcement who has completed five years or more of service under a pension system established pursuant to Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 31900) or under a pension system established pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 32200) or both or under this retirement system or under the State Employees' Retirement System or under a retirement system established under this chapter in another county, and develops heart trouble, such heart trouble so developing or manifesting itself in such cases shall be presumed to arise out of and in the course of employment. Such heart trouble so developing or manifesting itself in such cases shall in no case be attributed to any disease existing prior to such development or manifestation.

As used in this section, "fireman member" includes a member engaged in active fire suppression who is not classified as a safety member.

As used in this section, "member in active law enforcement" includes a member engaged in active law enforcement who is not classified as a safety member.

31720.6.
  1. If a safety member, a firefighter, or a member in active law enforcement who has completed five years or more of service under a pension system established pursuant to Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 31900) or under a pension system established pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 32200) or both or under this retirement system or under the Public Employees' Retirement System or under a retirement system established under this chapter in another county, and develops cancer, the cancer so developing or manifesting itself in those cases shall be presumed to arise out of and in the course of employment. The cancer so developing or manifesting itself in those cases shall in no case be attributed to any disease existing prior to that development or manifestation.
  2. Notwithstanding the existence of nonindustrial predisposing or contributing factors, any safety member, firefighter member, or member active in law enforcement described in subdivision (a) permanently incapacitated for the performance of duty as a result of cancer shall receive a service-connected disability retirement if the member demonstrates that he or she was exposed to a known carcinogen as a result of performance of job duties.

    "Known carcinogen" for purposes of this section means those carcinogenic agents recognized by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, or the Director of the Department of Industrial Relations.
  3. The presumption is disputable and may be controverted by evidence, that the carcinogen to which the member has demonstrated exposure is not reasonably linked to the disabling cancer, provided that the primary site of the cancer has been established. Unless so controverted, the board is bound to find in accordance with the presumption. This presumption shall be extended to a member following termination of service for a period of three calendar months for each full year of the requisite service, but not to exceed 60 months in any circumstance, commencing with the last date actually worked in the specified capacity.
  4. "Firefighter," for purposes of this section, includes a member engaged in active fire suppression who is not classified as a safety member.
  5. "Member in active law enforcement," for purposes of this section, includes a member engaged in active law enforcement who is not classified as a safety member.
31720.7.
  1. If a safety member, a firefighter, a county probation officer, or a member in active law enforcement who has completed five years or more of service under a pension system established pursuant to Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 31900) or under a pension system established pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 32200), or both, or under this retirement system, under the Public Employees' Retirement System, or under a retirement system established under this chapter in another county, develops a blood-borne infectious disease, the disease so developing or manifesting itself in those cases shall be presumed to arise out of, and in the course of, employment. The disease so developing or manifesting itself in those cases shall in no case be attributed to any disease existing prior to that development or manifestation.
  2. Any safety member, firefighter, county probation officer, or member active in law enforcement described in subdivision (a) permanently incapacitated for the performance of duty as a result of a blood-borne infectious disease shall receive a service-connected disability retirement.
  3. (1) The presumption described in subdivision (a) is rebuttable by other evidence. Unless so rebutted, the board is bound to find in accordance with the presumption. (2) The blood-borne infectious disease presumption shall be extended to a member following termination of service for a period of three calendar months for each full year of the requisite service, but not to exceed 60 months in any circumstance, commencing with the last date actually worked in the specified capacity. (3) Notwithstanding paragraph (2), the methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus skin infection presumption shall be extended to a member following termination of service for a period of 90 days commencing with the last day actually worked in the specified capacity.
  4. "Blood-borne infectious disease," for purposes of this section, means a disease caused by exposure to pathogenic microorganisms that are present in human blood that can cause disease in humans, including, but not limited to, those pathogenic microorganisms defined as blood-borne pathogens by the Department of Industrial Relations.
  5. "Member in active law enforcement," for purposes of this section, means members employed by a sheriff's office, by a police or fire department of a city, county, city and county, district, or by another public or municipal corporation or political subdivision or who are described in Chapter 4.5 (commencing with Section 830) of Title 3 of Part 2 of the Penal Code or who are employed by any county forestry or firefighting department or unit, except any of those members whose principal duties are clerical or otherwise do not clearly fall within the scope of active law enforcement services or active firefighting services, such as stenographers, telephone operators, and other office workers, and includes a member engaged in active law enforcement who is not classified as a safety member.
31720.9.
  1. If a peace officer member, as defined in Sections 830.1 to 830.5, inclusive, of the Penal Code, or firefighter member, with service under a pension system established pursuant to Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 31900) or under a pension system established pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 32200), or both, or under this retirement system, under the Public Employees' Retirement System, or under a retirement system established under this chapter in another county, becomes ill or dies due to exposure to a biochemical substance, the illness that develops or manifests itself in those cases shall be presumed to arise out of, and in the course of, employment. The illness that develops or manifests itself in those cases shall in no case be attributed to any illness existing prior to that development or manifestation.
  2. Any peace officer member or firefighter member, as described in subdivision (a), who becomes permanently incapacitated as a result of exposure to a biochemical substance shall receive a service-connected disability retirement.
  3. The presumption described in subdivision (a) is rebuttable by other evidence. Unless rebutted, the board is bound to find in accordance with the presumption. This presumption shall be extended to a member following termination of service for a period of three calendar months for each full year of the requisite service, but not to exceed 60 months in any circumstance, commencing with the last date actually worked in the specified capacity.
  4. For purposes of this section, a peace officer member or firefighter member, as described in subdivision (a), does not include a member whose principal duties are clerical or otherwise do not clearly fall within the scope of active law enforcement services or active firefighting services, such as stenographers, telephone operators, and other office workers.
  5. "Biochemical substance" means any biological or chemical agent that may be used as a weapon of mass destruction, including, but not limited to, any chemical warfare agent, weaponized biological agent, or nuclear or radiological agent, as these terms are defined in Section 11417 of the Penal Code.
 
 
 
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