Compensation for Injured Police Officers in South Carolina

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Law enforcement is a dangerous occupation. For injured police officers in South Carolina and their families, receiving compensation following an injury on-duty is especially important.

Common causes of injury for police officers

Some of the most common causes of injury for police officers are:

  • Motor vehicle accidents, including in vehicle pursuit
  • Gunfire and stabbings
  • Assault and battery, injury when a person is resisting arrest
  • Electrocution and fire
  • Needle sticks, exposure to drugs, and hazards
  • Heart attack and other cardiac incidents
  • Boating and aircraft crashes

Source: Officer Down Memorial Page, South Carolina Line of Duty Deaths

Compensation for Injured Police Officers in South Carolina

If you are a police officer injured in the line of duty, you have important rights. You may receive workers’ compensation, third-party compensation, and other assistance.

Workers’ compensation may provide coverage without regard to fault. It may provide medical care and treatment, replacement wages, and disability benefits. In addition, you may qualify for a third-party claim for compensation. Other assistance may be available.

If you have been hurt as a law enforcement officer, attorney Bobby Jones can help. He is an experienced injury and workers’ compensation lawyer, proudly serving law enforcement officers in Greenville, South Carolina. To see how he can help you, contact us today to discuss your case.

Workers’ Compensation for Police Officers

A South Carolina police officer may receive workers’ compensation benefits for personal injury or death arising out of and in the course of employment. S.C. Code § 42-1-310. Any reasonable doubt about whether benefits are appropriate should be resolved in favor of awarding benefits.

Attorney Bobby Jones can help you address any issues that may arise in your workers’ compensation case, including:

  • Receiving the medical care you deserve
  • Claiming the wage benefits that you deserve, calculating the correct amounts
  • Addressing requests to return to work and limitations on work activities
  • Whether you were on the job and the time of the injury, including times when an officer is on call or driving an issued patrol vehicle
  • Responding to allegations that the injury was not the result of a risk incident to employment
  • Death benefits for family members of law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty

Cardiac events and heart attacks for law enforcement officers in South Carolina

South Carolina law S.C. Code § 42-11-30(B)(1) discusses police officers suffering cardiac incidents resulting in disability or death. For a law enforcement officer, a cardiac event is presumed to be related to employment if it occurs during or within 24 hours of unusual or extraordinary physical exertion. The officer must have entered their service under 37 years old and completed a physical examination.

Law enforcement, workers’ compensation, and mental injuries

Law enforcement is both physically and mentally challenging. Mental health injuries can be covered by workers’ compensation. However, there is heightened scrutiny on a claim involving only a mental injury.

S.C. Code § 42-1-160 discusses the proof needed to receive benefits. Mental injury and illness alone, without an accompanying physical injury, must be the result of extraordinary and usual circumstances. The circumstances must be worse than the normal conditions of employment.

The person seeking benefits must prove that the mental injury was caused by the unusual employment conditions. (In Bentley v. Spartanburg Co., the court denied workers’ compensation benefits for an officer that shot and killed someone in the line of duty. The court did not consider the event unusual or extraordinary in law enforcement.)

South Carolina Death Benefits for Police Officers Killed on the Job

Surviving family members of a police officer killed in the line of duty may receive benefits. Workers’ compensation provides death benefits for dependents or parents if there are no dependents. Death benefits pay 2/3 of the weekly wage up to a maximum amount. Children may receive benefits for 500 weeks or until age 19, until age 23 if a full-time student, or beyond if disabled. Funeral and burial costs may be covered.

Children of the deceased receive four years of tuition-free education at any South Carolina state college, university, vocational or technical school. S.C. Code § 59-111-110. A spouse and dependents that were covered by health and dental insurance may receive continued coverage for one year. There are additional programs and funds, both public and private, that help families of South Carolina law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty.

Attorney for Injured Police Officer Benefits

If you are a law enforcement officer and you have been hurt on the job, contact us at Bobby Jones Law in Greenville, SC, today for a consultation about your situation.

The team at Bobby Jones Law LLC works tirelessly for the injured in South Carolina. His achievements include:
  • More than $60 million collected for our clients
  • Multiple recoveries exceeding $1 million, including an eight-figure settlement
  • Recognized by Best Lawyers in America
  • Named among the “Best Law Firms” by U.S. News & World Report
  • Named to the Top 100 Trial Lawyers by The National Trial Lawyers
  • Named to Super Lawyers 2017–2024
  • Member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum
  • Selected as Legal Elite of the Upstate 2021–2023
We’re humbled to be considered one of the top firms in the Upstate and invite you to learn what sets our award-winning legal services apart. Call or request a consultation online.
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