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WORKERS COMPENSATION ACT 1987 - SECT 19A
Presumptions relating to certain cancers--firefighters
19A Presumptions relating to certain cancers--firefighters
(1) In the application of this Act to a worker who is an eligible firefighter,
it is presumed (unless the contrary is established) that the disease
contracted by the worker was contracted in the course of the worker's
firefighting employment and that employment was--
(a) for the purposes of the
"disease injury" in section 4, a contributing factor to contracting the
(b) for the purposes of section 9A, a substantial contributing
factor to contracting the disease.
Note : Amendments made to section 9A and
the definition of
"disease injury" in section 4 by Schedule 7 to the Workers Compensation
Legislation Amendment Act 2012 do not apply to police officers, paramedics or
firefighters. See clause 25 of Part 19H of Schedule 6 to this Act.
worker is an
"eligible firefighter" if the worker--
(a) has, at any time, been engaged in
firefighting employment, and
(b) has contracted a disease that is a cancer of
a kind specified in Schedule 4.
(3) A worker has been engaged in
"firefighting employment" if--
(a) the worker has, at any time, been employed
by any person, body or agency (or former body or agency) prescribed for the
purposes of this section by the regulations, and
(b) in the course of that
employment, the worker has performed firefighting activities.
section does not apply to a disease contracted by an eligible firefighter if
the total aggregate period during which the worker has been engaged in
firefighting employment as at the date of injury (
"the service period" ) is less than the qualifying service period specified
for the disease in Schedule 4.
(5) Any period during which an
eligible firefighter has served in the capacity of an
eligible volunteer firefighter is to be counted towards the service period.
(6) However, any period during which the eligible firefighter concurrently
serves as an eligible volunteer firefighter and engages in
firefighting employment is to be counted once only.
(7) For the purposes of
the application of section 261 of the 1998 Act to a disease to which a
presumption under this section applies, the period required by that section
for the making of a claim for compensation in respect of the disease is taken
to commence on the date of injury in relation to the disease (regardless of
when the eligible firefighter or any other person first became aware of the
(8) Any compensation payable on the basis of a presumption under
this section to an eligible firefighter who, on the last day of
the service period, concurrently served as an eligible volunteer firefighter
and engaged in firefighting employment with an employer is payable under this
Act by that employer.
(9) In this section--
"date of injury" , in relation to a disease, means the date of whichever of
the following occurs first--
(a) the disease is first diagnosed by a medical
(b) the firefighter dies as a result of the disease.
"eligible volunteer firefighter" means an official fire fighter within the
meaning of Part 2 of the Workers Compensation (Bush Fire, Emergency and
Rescue Services) Act 1987 .
"firefighting activities" means any of the following activities performed by a
(a) extinguishing, controlling or preventing the spread of fire,
bush fire hazard reduction work within the meaning of the Rural Fires Act
(c) the provision of training or instruction in the performance of an
activity referred to in paragraph (a) or (b) resulting in exposure of the
worker to smoke or other hazards of fire.
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