Section 36-30-41Applicability; compensation for qualified firefighters; burden of proof.
(a) This article shall apply to firefighters who, upon entering the service of the state as firefighters, have successfully passed a physical examination which failed to reveal any evidence of a firefighter's occupational disease and who have completed at least three years' service as firefighters. If a physical examination was not required at the time of entry into service, a firefighter who completes an exam by January 1, 2013, shall be deemed eligible for benefits under this section.
(b) If a firefighter who qualifies for benefits under Chapter 29A, or any other law, suffers disability as a result of a firefighter's occupational disease, his or her disability shall be compensable the same as any service-connected disability under any law which provides benefits for firefighters of the state injured in the line of duty. If a firefighter who qualifies for benefits under this section dies as the result of a firefighter's occupational disease, his or her death shall be compensable to the same extent as the death of a firefighter killed in the line of duty, and the firefighter shall be considered to have been killed in the line of duty for purposes of Sections 36-30-1 to 36-30-7, inclusive.
(c) In the case of an occupational disease as defined in this article, the state must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that the condition was caused by some means other than the occupation to disqualify the firefighter from benefits.
(Act 2012-559, p. 1643, §2.)