Firefighters put their lives on the line every day to save others. While most workers in Oklahoma can find comfort in knowing that the workers' compensation program would have their backs if they should suffer workplace injuries or occupational illnesses, firefighters might find it difficult to obtain benefits. Certain diseases are presumed work-related for firefighters, but the claims process could be daunting.
Under Oklahoma laws, respiratory system injuries, heart disease, infectious diseases and development of any type of cancer in firefighters are presumed to be conditions that result from workplace hazards inherent to their occupation. However, claims for compensation can be denied if contrary evidence can be shown. This could significantly complicate the claims process for affected firefighters.