The Public Safety Officers’ Benefit Program provides benefits to Public safety officers (PSO) and their families if the PSO is injured or killed in the line of duty. This program first enacted in 1976 and subsequently expanded is designed to assist in the retention of PSO’s, establish their value in the community and offer peace of mind to the men and women in those lines of work.
There are very significant benefits that are available.
Public Safety Officers by statute are the following:
- Law Enforcement
- Members of Rescue Squads or Ambulance Crews
- Disaster Relief Workers
Benefits are available when they are Injured or Killed in the line of Duty. The line of duty is defined as:
- Performance of line of duty activity or line of duty action
- Authorized Commuting
- Or convincing evidence that such injury resulted from the injured party’s status as a public safety officer
The benefits Available:
- Death Benefits of $339,310.00 as of 2015 – one time lump sum payment
- Disability Benefits
- Educational assistance to Dependents
There are time Limitations associated with applying for the benefits.
- Death and disability benefit must be claimed within 3 years of death or injury date
- Within one year of a denial of final determination
- Education Assistance benefits have different Rules and applicants are encourage to review the statutes or seek legal counsel
There are bars to recovery in the Act. Specifically the Act Bars Recovery if:
- There is a Failure to undertake treatment (with reasonable justification or excuse)
- The individuals death is associated with CDS abuse
- Caused by abuse of Alcohol by the PSO
- Intentional acts by the PSO
- Gross Negligence of the PSO in the execution of his/her duties
In order to apply for these benefits and get more information, the following links may be used.
Levinson Axelrod is committed to helping the Public Service Officers in times of need and when they suffer injuries on the job. Please contact one of our attorneys for more information or assistance in obtaining these benefits.