Nebraska Revised Statute 16-1031
Firefighter; disability in the line of duty; disability benefit; return to duty; conditions.
(1) Except as provided in subsection (3) of this section for temporary disability, if any firefighter becomes disabled, such firefighter shall be placed upon the roll of pensioned firefighters at the regular retirement pension of fifty percent of regular pay for the period of such disability. For purposes of this section, disability shall mean the complete inability of the firefighter, for reasons of accident or other cause while in the line of duty, to perform the duties of a firefighter as defined by fire department job descriptions or ordinance.
(2) No disability benefit payment shall be made except upon adequate proof furnished to the city, consisting of a medical examination conducted by a competent, disinterested physician who is duly licensed to practice medicine and surgery in this state and who certifies to the city that the firefighter is unable to perform the duties of a firefighter. The city, during the first three years of the payment of such benefits, shall have the right, at reasonable times, to require the disabled firefighter to undergo a medical examination at the city's expense to determine the continuance of the disability claimed. After such three-year period, the city may request the district court to order the firefighter to submit proof of the continuance of the disability claimed if the city has reasonable grounds to believe the firefighter is fraudulently receiving disability payments. The city shall have the right to demand a physical examination of the firefighter by a competent, disinterested physician who is duly licensed to practice medicine and surgery in this state and who is chosen by the city. The expense of such examination shall be borne by the city.
(3) In case of temporary disability of a firefighter received while in the line of duty, he or she shall receive his or her salary during the continuance of such disability for a period not to exceed twelve months, except that if it is ascertained by the city within twelve months that such temporary disability has become a disability as defined in this section, then the salary shall cease and he or she shall be entitled to the benefits for pensions in case of disability as provided in this section.
(4) All payments of pension or salary provided by this section shall be subject to deduction of amounts paid under the Nebraska Workers' Compensation Act. Total payments to a disabled firefighter, in excess of amounts paid as workers' compensation benefits, shall not be less than the retirement value at the date of disability. If the actuarial equivalent of the disability pension payable under this section exceeds the firefighter's retirement value at the time of the first payment, the city shall contribute such additional amounts as may be necessary, from time to time, to provide for the required disability pension.
(5) If a firefighter who was receiving a pension under this section is later determined to be no longer disabled, the pension provided for under this section shall terminate and the firefighter's vested retirement value, as reduced by any disability payments made from the retirement system, shall thereafter be held and administered in the same manner as for any nondisabled firefighter or former firefighter.
(6) If a firefighter who was receiving a pension under this section is later determined to be no longer disabled during the first three years when disability benefit payments are being paid, the firefighter may return to duty with the fire department under the following conditions:
(a) If a vacancy exists on the fire department for which the firefighter is qualified and the firefighter wishes to return to the fire department, the city shall hire the firefighter to fill the vacancy at a pay grade of not less than his or her previous pay grade; or
(b) If no vacancy exists in the fire department and the firefighter wishes to return to the fire department, the city shall place the firefighter on a waiting list and rehire the firefighter at a pay grade of not less than his or her previous pay grade when a vacancy occurs for which the firefighter is qualified.
The provisions of this subsection shall not apply to a firefighter whose disability benefit payments are terminated because of fraud on the part of the firefighter.
- Laws 1983, LB 531, § 12;
- Laws 1986, LB 811, § 7;
- Laws 1993, LB 724, § 9.
- Nebraska Workers' Compensation Act, see section 48-1,110.