Volunteer Firefighter's and Volunteer Ambulance Worker's Guide to Workers' Compensation Benefits
Introduction to the VFAW Law
The Volunteer Firefighters' and Volunteer Ambulance Workers' Benefits Laws provide cash benefits and/or medical care for volunteer members who are injured or become ill in the line of duty. Recognizing the unselfish service of volunteer firefighters and volunteer ambulance workers, laws designed to protect such volunteers who are injured, or who become ill, in the line of duty, were enacted in 1957 and 1989, respectively.
The local political subdivision pays for this insurance, and cannot require the volunteer member to contribute to the cost of coverage. Weekly cash benefits and medical care are paid by the subdivision's insurance carrier, in accordance with the applicable law. The Workers' Compensation Board is a state agency that administers these laws, and if disputes arise, adjudicates them through a quasi-judicial proceeding.
In a volunteer firefighters' or ambulance workers' benefits case, no one party is determined to be at fault. The amount that a claimant receives is not decreased by his/her carelessness, nor increased by the company's fault. A volunteer member loses his/her right to benefits if the injury results solely from his/her intoxication from alcohol or drugs, or from the intent to injure him/herself or someone else.