[House Report 117-335]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]


117th Congress }                                          { Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2nd Session   }                                          { 117-335

======================================================================
 
               PUBLIC SAFETY OFFICER SUPPORT ACT OF 2022

                                _______
                                

  May 18, 2022.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

    Mr. Nadler, from the Committee on the Judiciary, submitted the 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 6943]

    The Committee on the Judiciary, to whom was referred the 
bill (H.R. 6943) to amend the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe 
Streets Act of 1968 to authorize public safety officer death 
benefits to officers suffering from post-traumatic stress 
disorder or acute stress disorder, and for other purposes, 
having considered the same, reports favorably thereon with an 
amendment and recommends that the bill as amended do pass.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
Purpose and Summary..............................................     4
Background and Need for the Legislation..........................     4
Hearings.........................................................     5
Committee Consideration..........................................     5
Committee Votes..................................................     5
Committee Oversight Findings.....................................     5
Committee Estimate of Budgetary Effects..........................     6
New Budget Authority and Congressional Budget Office Cost 
  Estimate.......................................................     6
Duplication of Federal Programs..................................     6
Performance Goals and Objectives.................................     6
Advisory on Earmarks.............................................     6
Section-by-Section Analysis......................................     6
Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported............     7

    The amendment is as follows:
  Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Public Safety Officer Support Act of 
2022''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

  Congress finds the following:
          (1) Every day, public safety officers, including police 
        officers, firefighters, emergency medical technicians, and 
        others, work to maintain the safety, health, and well-being of 
        the communities they serve.
          (2) This means public safety officers are routinely called to 
        respond to stressful and potentially traumatic situations, 
        often putting their own lives in danger.
          (3) This work not only puts public safety officers at-risk 
        for experiencing harm, serious injury, and cumulative and acute 
        trauma, but also places them at up to 25.6 times higher risk 
        for developing post-traumatic stress disorder when compared to 
        individuals without such experiences.
          (4) Psychological evidence indicates that law enforcement 
        officers experience significant job-related stressors and 
        exposures that may confer increased risk for mental health 
        morbidities (such as post-traumatic stress disorder and 
        suicidal thoughts, ideation, intents, and behaviors) and 
        hastened mortality.
          (5) Public safety officers often do not have the resources or 
        support they need, leaving them at higher risk for long-term 
        mental health consequences.
          (6) Whereas, although the Department of Defense already 
        considers servicemember suicides to be line-of-duty deaths and 
        provides Federal support to eligible surviving families, the 
        Federal Government does not recognize public safety officer 
        suicides as deaths in the line of duty.
          (7) In 2017, the Department of Justice approved 481 claims 
        under the Public Safety Officers' Benefits Program under 
        subpart 1 of part L of title I of the Omnibus Crime Control and 
        Safe Streets Act of 1968 (34 U.S.C. 10281 et seq.), but not one 
        of them for the more than 240 public safety officers who died 
        by suicide that year.
          (8) Public safety officers who have died or are disabled as a 
        result of suicide or post-traumatic stress disorder do not 
        qualify for the Public Safety Officers' Benefits Program, 
        despite the fact that public safety officers are more likely to 
        die by suicide than from any other line-of-duty cause of death.

SEC. 3. PUBLIC SAFETY OFFICER DEATH BENEFITS FOR POST-TRAUMATIC STRESS 
                    DISORDER AND ACUTE STRESS DISORDER.

  (a) In General.--Section 1201 of title I of the Omnibus Crime Control 
and Safe Streets Act of 1968 (34 U.S.C. 10281) is amended by adding at 
the end the following:
  ``(o) Post-traumatic Stress Disorder and Acute Stress Disorder.--
          ``(1) Definitions.--In this section:
                  ``(A) Mass casualty event.--The term `mass casualty 
                event' means an incident resulting in casualties to not 
                fewer than 3 victims, including--
                          ``(i) an incident that exceeds the normal 
                        resources for emergency response available in 
                        the jurisdiction where the incident takes 
                        place; and
                          ``(ii) an incident that results in a sudden 
                        temporal surge of injured individuals 
                        necessitating emergency services.
                  ``(B) Mass fatality event.--The term `mass fatality 
                event' means an incident resulting in the fatalities of 
                not fewer than 3 individuals at 1 or more locations 
                close to one another with a common cause.
                  ``(C) Mass shooting.--The term `mass shooting' means 
                a multiple homicide incident in which not fewer than 3 
                victims are killed--
                          ``(i) with a firearm;
                          ``(ii) within 1 event; and
                          ``(iii) in 1 or more locations in close 
                        proximity.
                  ``(D) Exposed.--The term `exposed' includes--
                          ``(i) directly experiencing or witnessing an 
                        event; or
                          ``(ii) being subjected, in an intense way, to 
                        aversive consequences of the event (including a 
                        public safety officer collecting human 
                        remains).
                  ``(E) Traumatic event.--The term `traumatic event' 
                means, in the case of a public safety officer exposed 
                to an event, an event that is--
                          ``(i) a homicide, suicide, or the violent or 
                        gruesome death of another individual (including 
                        such a death resulting from a mass casualty 
                        event, mass fatality event, or mass shooting);
                          ``(ii) a harrowing circumstance posing an 
                        extraordinary and significant danger or threat 
                        to the life of or of serious bodily harm to any 
                        individual (including such a circumstance as a 
                        mass casualty event, mass fatality event, or 
                        mass shooting); or
                          ``(iii) an act of criminal sexual violence 
                        committed against any individual.
          ``(2) Personal injury sustained in line of duty.--As 
        determined by the Bureau--
                  ``(A) post-traumatic stress disorder, acute stress 
                disorder, or trauma and stress related disorders 
                suffered by a public safety officer and diagnosed by a 
                licensed medical or mental health professional, shall 
                be presumed to constitute a personal injury within the 
                meaning of subsection (a), sustained in the line of 
                duty by the officer, if the officer was exposed, while 
                on duty, to one or more traumatic events and such 
                exposure was a substantial factor in the disorder;
                  ``(B) post-traumatic stress disorder, acute stress 
                disorder, or trauma and stress related disorders, 
                suffered by a public safety officer who has contacted 
                or attempted to contact the employee assistance program 
                of the agency or entity that the officer serves, a 
                licensed medical or mental health professional, suicide 
                prevention services, or another mental health 
                assistance service in order to receive help, treatment, 
                or diagnosis for post-traumatic stress disorder or 
                acute stress disorder, shall be presumed to constitute 
                a personal injury within the meaning of subsection (a), 
                sustained in the line of duty by the officer, if the 
                officer, was exposed, while on duty, to one or more 
                traumatic events and such exposure was a substantial 
                factor in the disorder; and
                  ``(C) post-traumatic stress disorder, acute stress 
                disorder, or trauma and stress related disorders, 
                suffered by a public safety officer who was exposed, 
                while on duty, to one or more traumatic events shall be 
                presumed to constitute a personal injury within the 
                meaning of subsection (a), sustained in the line of 
                duty by the officer if such exposure was a substantial 
                factor in the disorder.
          ``(3) Presumption of death or total disability.--A public 
        safety officer shall be presumed to have died or become 
        permanently and totally disabled (within the meaning of 
        subsection (a) or (b)) as the direct and proximate result of a 
        personal injury sustained in the line of duty, if (as 
        determined by the Bureau) the officer either--
                  ``(A) took an action, which action was intended to 
                bring about the officer's death and directly and 
                proximately resulted in such officer's death or 
                permanent and total disability and exposure to one or 
                more traumatic events was a substantial factor in the 
                action taken by the officer; or
                  ``(B) took an action within 45 days of the end of 
                exposure to a traumatic event, which action was 
                intended to bring about the officer's death and 
                directly and proximately resulted in such officer's 
                death or permanent and total disability, if such action 
                was not inconsistent with a psychiatric disorder.
          ``(4) Applicability of limitations on benefits.--
                  ``(A) Intentional actions.--Section 1202(a)(1) shall 
                not apply to any claim for a benefit under this part 
                that is payable in accordance with this subsection.
                  ``(B) Substance use.--Section 1202(a)(2) shall not 
                preclude the payment of a benefit under this part if 
                the benefit is otherwise payable in accordance with 
                this subsection.''.
  (b) Retroactive Applicability.--
          (1) In general.--Except as provided in paragraph (2), the 
        amendments made by this section shall--
                  (A) take effect on the date of enactment of this Act; 
                and
                  (B) apply to any matter pending, before the Bureau of 
                Justice Assistance or otherwise, on the date of 
                enactment of this Act, or filed (consistent with pre-
                existing effective dates) or accruing after that date.
          (2) Exceptions.--The amendments made by this section shall 
        apply to any action taken by a public safety officer described 
        in paragraph (3) of section 1201(o) of title I of the Omnibus 
        Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 (as added by this 
        Act) that occurred on or after January 1, 2019.

SEC. 4. TECHNICAL FIXES.

  (a) Subpoena Power; Employment of Hearing Officers; Authority to Hold 
Hearings.--Section 806 of title I of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe 
Streets Act of 1968 is amended by--
          (1) striking ``by the Attorney General'';
          (2) inserting ``Assistant'' before ``Attorney'' everywhere it 
        appears;
          (3) striking ``Code)'' and inserting ``Code (without regard 
        to the days limitation prescribed therein), but shall, in no 
        event, be understood to be (or to have the authority of) 
        officers of the United States)'';
          (4) striking ``necessary to carry out'' and inserting 
        ``necessary or convenient to assist them in carrying out'';
          (5) striking ``or any'' and inserting ``, or (subject to such 
        limitations as the appointing authority may, in its sole 
        discretion, impose from time to time) any'';
          (6) inserting a comma after ``thereby'';
          (7) striking ``duties under this title'' and inserting 
        ``duties under any law administered by or under the Office'';
          (8) striking ``such hearing examiners'' the second place it 
        appears; and
          (9) striking ``examinations and'' and inserting 
        ``examinations, and''.
  (b) Definitions.--Section 1204 of title I of the Omnibus Crime 
Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 is amended--
          (1) in paragraph (11), by striking ``; and'' and inserting 
        ``;'';
          (2) in paragraph (12)(B), by striking ``basis.'' and 
        inserting ``basis;''; and
          (3) in paragraph (14), by redesignating the second 
        subparagraph (F) as subparagraph (G).

SEC. 5. GAO REPORT.

  Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the 
Comptroller General of the United States shall submit to Congress a 
report that details benefits issued pursuant to subsection (o) of 
section 1201 of title I of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets 
Act of 1968 (34 U.S.C. 10281), as added by section 3, and includes any 
recommendations to improve that subsection.

                          Purpose and Summary

    H.R. 6943, the ``Public Safety Officer Support Act of 
2022,'' expands the eligibility of certain officers or their 
surviving family for death and disability benefits as provided 
for by the Public Safety Officers' Benefits (PSOB) program to 
include coverage for public safety officers who die by suicide 
or are disabled as a result of traumatic experiences.

                Background and Need for the Legislation

    The work of public safety officers, including firefighters, 
police, officers, and emergency medical technicians, often 
exposes them to traumatic events and places them at an 
increased risk for developing post-traumatic stress disorder 
(PTSD).\1\ On average, police officers witness 188 traumatic 
events during their careers.\2\ This exposure to trauma can 
lead to several forms of mental illness. It is estimated that 
approximately fifteen percent of law enforcement officers in 
the United States experience PTSD symptoms. PTSD and depression 
rates among firefighters and police officers have been found to 
be as much as five times higher than the rates within the 
civilian population.\3\ The organization Badge of Life, which 
collects data on the mental health of police officers, found 
that an average of 130 law enforcement officers die by suicide 
every year, or eleven per month.\4\ Surprisingly, more officers 
die by suicide than die of shootings and traffic accidents 
combined.\5\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\Dr. John Violanti. PTSD among Police Officers: Impact on 
Critical Decision Making, May 2018, https://cops.usdoj.gov/html/
dispatch/05-2018/PTSD.html.
    \2\Ruderman White Paper on Mental Health and Suicide of First 
Responders, https://rudermanfoundation.org/white_papers/police-
officers-and-firefighters-are-more-likely-to-die-by-suicide-than-in-
line-of-duty/.
    \3\Id.
    \4\Andy O'hara, It's Time We Talk About Police Suicide, The 
Marshall Project, October, 3, 2017, https://www.themarshallproject.org/
2017/10/03/it-s-time-we-talk-about-police-suicide.
    \5\Id.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The PSOB program provides benefits to the survivors of law 
enforcement officers, firefighters, and other first responders 
whose death (or catastrophic injury) was the direct and 
proximate result of a physical injury sustained in the line of 
duty.\6\ The benefits include death benefits, disability 
benefits, and education benefits for eligible spouses and 
children of public safety officers. Since 2013, the Bureau of 
Justice Assistance, which administers the PSOB program, has 
approved more than 1,700 death and disability claims and 
provided more than $300 million to eligible officers and their 
families.\7\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \6\Bureau of Justice Assistance, Public Safety Officers Benefit 
Program, Fact Sheet, August 2020, https://psob.bja.ojp.gov/
PSOB_FactSheet2019.pdf.
    \7\Public Safety Officers' Benefits Program: Improvements Needed to 
Strengthen Reporting on 9/11-Related Claims, GAO, July 25, 2019, 
https://www.gao.gov/products/gao-19-521r.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    In 2017, the Department of Justice approved 481 PSOB 
claims, but not a single claim for the over 240 public safety 
officers who died by suicide.\8\ Despite being more likely to 
die by suicide than in the line of duty, officers who have died 
or are permanently disabled by either suicide attempts, or 
post-traumatic stress disorder do not qualify for benefits 
under the PSOB program. This includes the families of the four 
officers who died by suicide after responding to the attack on 
the U.S. Capitol building on January 6, 2021.\9\ The exclusion 
of suicide and mental illness from the PSOB program varies 
significantly from the policy of the United States military, 
which now treats 90% of suicides as line-of-duty deaths caused 
by post-traumatic stress, brain injuries, and other deployment 
hazards.\10\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \8\Ruderman White Paper on Mental Health and Suicide of First 
Responders, https://rudermanfoundation.org/white_papers/police-
officers-and-firefighters-are-more-likely-to-die-by-suicide-than-in-
line-of-duty/.
    \9\Jan Wolfe, Four officers who responded to U.S. Capitol attack 
have died by suicide, Reuters, August 2, 2021, https://www.reuters.com/
world/us/officer-who-responded-us-capitol-attack-is-third-die-by-
suicide-2021-08-02/.
    \10\Shaila Dewan, Police Officer's Suicide After Jan. 6 Riot Is 
Ruled a Line-of-Duty Death, New York Times, March 10, 2022, https://
www.nytimes.com/2022/03/10/us/police-suicide-capitol-riot.html.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The Public Safety Officer Support Act would expand the 
Public Safety Officers' Benefits program to include coverage 
for public safety officers who die by suicide or are disabled 
as a result of traumatic experiences. The bill creates an 
avenue for officers to seek disability benefits for PTSD linked 
to severe trauma and allows the families of officers who are 
lost to trauma-linked suicide to apply for death benefits.

                                Hearings

    The Committee on the Judiciary held no hearings on H.R. 
6943.

                        Committee Consideration

    On May 11, 2022, the Committee met in open session and 
ordered the bill, H.R. 6943, favorably reported with an 
amendment in the nature of a substitute, by a voice vote, a 
quorum being present.

                            Committee Votes

    No roll call votes occurred during the Committee's 
consideration of H.R. 6943.

                      Committee Oversight Findings

    In compliance with clause 3(c)(1) of House rule XIII, the 
Committee advises that the findings and recommendations of the 
Committee, based on oversight activities under clause 2(b)(1) 
of House rule X, are incorporated in the descriptive portions 
of this report.

                Committee Estimate of Budgetary Effects

    Pursuant to clause 3(d)1) of House rule XIII, the Committee 
adopts as its own the cost estimate prepared by the Director of 
the Congressional Budget Office pursuant to section 402 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974.

   New Budget Authority and Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(2) of House rule XIII and section 
308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, and pursuant to 
clause 3(c)(3) of House rule XIII and section 402 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Committee has requested 
but not received from the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office, a budgetary analysis and a cost estimate of the bill.

                    Duplication of Federal Programs

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(5) of House rule XIII, no provision 
of H.R. 6943 establishes or reauthorizes a program of the 
federal government known to be duplicative of another federal 
program.

                    Performance Goals and Objectives

    The Committee states that pursuant to clause 3(c)(4) of 
House rule XIII, H.R. 6943 will increase public safety and 
improve law enforcement practices by expanding the eligibility 
of certain officers or their surviving family for death and 
disability benefits as provided for by the PSOB program to 
include coverage for public safety officers who die by suicide 
or are disabled as a result of traumatic experiences.

                          Advisory on Earmarks

    In accordance with clause 9 of House rule XXI, H.R. 6943 
does not contain any congressional earmarks, limited tax 
benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined in clause 9(d), 
9(e), or 9(f) of rule XXI.

                      Section-by-Section Analysis

    The following discussion describes the bill as reported by 
the Committee.
    Sec. 1. Short title. Section 1 sets forth the short title 
of the bill as the ``Public Safety Officer Support Act of 
2022.''
    Sec 2. Findings. Section 2 provides findings related to the 
prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder among public 
safety officers and current limits to the PSOB program.
    Sec. 3. Public Safety Officer Death Benefits for Post-
Traumatic Stress Disorder and Acute Stress Disorder. Section 3 
amends the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1986 
to expand the PSOB program to provide eligibility for benefits 
to officers with PTSD and family members of officers who died 
by suicide. It makes the expanded eligibility retroactive and 
applies to events that occurred after January 1, 2019.
    Sec. 4. Technical Fixes. Section 4 includes technical and 
conforming changes to conform the bill text to the existing 
PSOB statute.
    Sec. 5. GAO Report. Section 5 requires GAO to submit a 
report to Congress within 1 year detailing the benefits 
provided by PSOB under this expanded eligibility and any 
recommendations to improve the program.

         Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported

  In compliance with clause 3(e) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, changes in existing law made by 
the bill, as reported, are shown as follows (existing law 
proposed to be omitted is enclosed in black brackets, new 
matter is printed in italics, and existing law in which no 
change is proposed is shown in roman):

           OMNIBUS CRIME CONTROL AND SAFE STREETS ACT OF 1968



           *       *       *       *       *       *       *
TITLE I--JUSTICE SYSTEM IMPROVEMENT

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Part H--Administrative Provisions

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


   subpoena power; employment of hearing officers; authority to hold 
                                hearings

  Sec. 806. The Assistant Attorney General, the Bureau of 
Justice Assistance, the National Institute of Justice, and the 
Bureau of Justice Statistics may appoint (to be assigned or 
employed on an interim or as-needed basis) such hearing 
examiners (who shall, if so designated [by the Attorney 
General], be understood to be comprised within the meaning of 
``special government employee'' under section 202 of title 18, 
United States [Code)] Code (without regard to the days 
limitation prescribed therein), but shall, in no event, be 
understood to be (or to have the authority of) officers of the 
United States) [such hearing examiners] or administrative law 
judges or request the use of such administrative law judges 
selected by the Office of Personnel Management pursuant to 
section 3344 of title 5, United States Code, as shall be 
[necessary to carry out] necessary or convenient to assist them 
in carrying out their respective powers and [duties under this 
title] duties under any law administered by or under the 
Office. The Bureau of Justice Assistance, the National 
Institute of Justice, and the Bureau of Justice Statistics or 
upon authorization, any member thereof [or any], or (subject to 
such limitations as the appointing authority may, in its sole 
discretion, impose from time to time) any hearing examiner or 
administrative law judge assigned to or employed thereby, shall 
have the power to hold hearings and issue subpoenas, administer 
oaths, examine witnesses, conduct [examinations and] 
examinations, and receive evidence at any place in the United 
States they respectively may designate.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


             Part L--Public Safety Officers' Death Benefits

                       Subpart 1--Death Benefits

                                payments

  Sec. 1201. (a) In any case in which the Bureau of Justice 
Assistance (hereinafter in this part referred to as the 
``Bureau'') determines, under regulations issued pursuant to 
this part, that a public safety officer has died as the direct 
and proximate result of a personal injury sustained in the line 
of duty, a benefit of $250,000, adjusted in accordance with 
subsection (h), and calculated in accordance with subsection 
(i), shall be payable by the Bureau, as follows (if the payee 
indicated is living on the date on which the determination is 
made)--
          (1) if there is no child who survived the public 
        safety officer, to the surviving spouse of the public 
        safety officer;
          (2) if there is at least 1 child who survived the 
        public safety officer and a surviving spouse of the 
        public safety officer, 50 percent to the surviving 
        child (or children, in equal shares) and 50 percent to 
        the surviving spouse;
          (3) if there is no surviving spouse of the public 
        safety officer, to the surviving child (or children, in 
        equal shares);
          (4) if there is no surviving spouse of the public 
        safety officer and no surviving child--
                  (A) to the surviving individual (or 
                individuals, in shares per the designation, or, 
                otherwise, in equal shares) designated by the 
                public safety officer to receive benefits under 
                this subsection in the most recently executed 
                designation of beneficiary of the public safety 
                officer on file at the time of death with the 
                public safety agency, organization, or unit; or
                  (B) if there is no individual qualifying 
                under subparagraph (A), to the surviving 
                individual (or individuals, in equal shares) 
                designated by the public safety officer to 
                receive benefits under the most recently 
                executed life insurance policy of the public 
                safety officer on file at the time of death 
                with the public safety agency, organization, or 
                unit;
          (5) if there is no individual qualifying under 
        paragraph (1), (2), (3), or (4), to the surviving 
        parent (or parents, in equal shares) of the public 
        safety officer; or
          (6) if there is no individual qualifying under 
        paragraph (1), (2), (3), (4), or (5), to the surviving 
        individual (or individuals, in equal shares) who would 
        qualify under the definition of the term ``child'' 
        under section 1204 but for age.
  (b) In accordance with regulations issued pursuant to this 
part, in any case in which the Bureau determines that a public 
safety officer has become permanently and totally disabled as 
the direct and proximate result of a personal injury sustained 
in the line of duty, a benefit shall be payable to the public 
safety officer (if living on the date on which the 
determination is made) in the same amount that would be 
payable, as of the date such injury was sustained (including as 
adjusted in accordance with subsection (h), and calculated in 
accordance with subsection (i)), if such determination were a 
determination under subsection (a): Provided, That for the 
purposes of making these benefit payments, there are authorized 
to be appropriated for each fiscal year such sums as may be 
necessary.
  (c) Whenever the Bureau determines upon a showing of need and 
prior to taking final action, that the death of a public safety 
officer is one with respect to which a benefit will probably be 
paid, the Bureau may make an interim benefit payment not 
exceeding $6,000, adjusted in accordance with subsection (h), 
to the individual entitled to receive a benefit under 
subsection (a) of this section.
  (d) The amount of an interim payment under subsection (c) 
shall be deducted from the amount of any final benefit paid to 
such individual.
  (e) Where there is no final benefit paid, the recipient of 
any interim payment under subsection (c) shall be liable for 
repayment of such amount. The Bureau may waive all or part of 
such repayment, considering for this purpose the hardship which 
would result from such repayment.
  (f) The benefit payable under this part shall be in addition 
to any other benefit that may be due from any other source, 
except--
          (1) payments authorized by section 12(k) of the Act 
        of September 1, 1916;
          (2) benefits authorized by section 8191 of title 5, 
        United States Code, such that beneficiaries shall 
        receive only such benefits under such section 8191 as 
        are in excess of the benefits received under this part; 
        or
          (3) payments under the September 11th Victim 
        Compensation Fund of 2001 (49 U.S.C. 40101 note; Public 
        Law 107-42).
  (g) No benefit paid under this part shall be subject to 
execution or attachment.
  (h) On October 1 of each fiscal year beginning after the 
effective date of this subsection, the Bureau shall adjust the 
level of the benefit payable immediately before such October 1 
under subsections (a) and (b) and the level of the interim 
benefit payable immediately before such October 1 under 
subsection (c), to reflect the annual percentage change in the 
Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers, published by the 
Bureau of Labor Statistics, occurring in the 1-year period 
ending on June 1 immediately preceding such October 1.
  (i) The amount payable under subsections (a) and (b), with 
respect to the death or permanent and total disability of a 
public safety officer, shall be the greater of--
          (1) the amount payable under the relevant subsection 
        as of the date of death or of the catastrophic injury 
        of the public safety officer; or
          (2) in any case in which the claim filed thereunder 
        has been pending for more than 365 days at the time of 
        final determination by the Bureau, the amount that 
        would be payable under the relevant subsection if the 
        death or the catastrophic injury of the public safety 
        officer had occurred on the date on which the Bureau 
        makes such final determination.
  (j)(1) No benefit is payable under this part with respect to 
the death of a public safety officer if a benefit is paid under 
this part with respect to the disability of such officer.
  (2) No benefit is payable under this part with respect to the 
disability of a public safety officer if a benefit is payable 
under this part with respect to the death of such public safety 
officer.
  (k) As determined by the Bureau, a heart attack, stroke, or 
vascular rupture suffered by a public safety officer shall be 
presumed to constitute a personal injury within the meaning of 
subsection (a), sustained in the line of duty by the officer 
and directly and proximately resulting in death, if--
          (1) the public safety officer, while on duty--
                  (A) engages in a situation involving 
                nonroutine stressful or strenuous physical law 
                enforcement, fire suppression, rescue, 
                hazardous material response, emergency medical 
                services, prison security, disaster relief, or 
                other emergency response activity; or
                  (B) participates in a training exercise 
                involving nonroutine stressful or strenuous 
                physical activity;
          (2) the heart attack, stroke, or vascular rupture 
        commences--
                  (A) while the officer is engaged or 
                participating as described in paragraph (1);
                  (B) while the officer remains on that duty 
                after being engaged or participating as 
                described in paragraph (1); or
                  (C) not later than 24 hours after the officer 
                is engaged or participating as described in 
                paragraph (1); and
          (3) the heart attack, stroke, or vascular rupture 
        directly and proximately results in the death of the 
        public safety officer,
unless competent medical evidence establishes that the heart 
attack, stroke, or vascular rupture was unrelated to the 
engagement or participation or was directly and proximately 
caused by something other than the mere presence of 
cardiovascular-disease risk factors.
  (l) For purposes of subsection (k), ``nonroutine stressful or 
strenuous physical'' excludes actions of a clerical, 
administrative, or nonmanual nature.
  (m) The Bureau may suspend or end collection action on an 
amount disbursed pursuant to a statute enacted retroactively or 
otherwise disbursed in error under subsection (a), (b), or (c), 
where such collection would be impractical, or would cause 
undue hardship to a debtor who acted in good faith.
  (n) The public safety agency, organization, or unit 
responsible for maintaining on file an executed designation of 
beneficiary or executed life insurance policy for purposes of 
subsection (a)(4) shall maintain the confidentiality of the 
designation or policy in the same manner as the agency, 
organization, or unit maintains personnel or other similar 
records of the public safety officer.
  (o) Post-traumatic Stress Disorder and Acute Stress 
Disorder.--
          (1) Definitions.--In this section:
                  (A) Mass casualty event.--The term ``mass 
                casualty event'' means an incident resulting in 
                casualties to not fewer than 3 victims, 
                including--
                          (i) an incident that exceeds the 
                        normal resources for emergency response 
                        available in the jurisdiction where the 
                        incident takes place; and
                          (ii) an incident that results in a 
                        sudden temporal surge of injured 
                        individuals necessitating emergency 
                        services.
                  (B) Mass fatality event.--The term ``mass 
                fatality event'' means an incident resulting in 
                the fatalities of not fewer than 3 individuals 
                at 1 or more locations close to one another 
                with a common cause.
                  (C) Mass shooting.--The term ``mass 
                shooting'' means a multiple homicide incident 
                in which not fewer than 3 victims are killed--
                          (i) with a firearm;
                          (ii) within 1 event; and
                          (iii) in 1 or more locations in close 
                        proximity.
                  (D) Exposed.--The term ``exposed'' includes--
                          (i) directly experiencing or 
                        witnessing an event; or
                          (ii) being subjected, in an intense 
                        way, to aversive consequences of the 
                        event (including a public safety 
                        officer collecting human remains).
                  (E) Traumatic event.--The term ``traumatic 
                event''means, in the case of a public safety 
                officer exposed to an event, an event that is--
                          (i) a homicide, suicide, or the 
                        violent or gruesome death of another 
                        individual (including such a death 
                        resulting from a mass casualty event, 
                        mass fatality event, or mass shooting);
                          (ii) a harrowing circumstance posing 
                        an extraordinary and significant danger 
                        or threat to the life of or of serious 
                        bodily harm to any individual 
                        (including such a circumstance as a 
                        mass casualty event, mass fatality 
                        event, or mass shooting); or
                          (iii) an act of criminal sexual 
                        violence committed against any 
                        individual.
          (2) Personal injury sustained in line of duty.--As 
        determined by the Bureau--
                  (A) post-traumatic stress disorder, acute 
                stress disorder, or trauma and stress related 
                disorders suffered by a public safety officer 
                and diagnosed by a licensed medical or mental 
                health professional, shall be presumed to 
                constitute a personal injury within the meaning 
                of subsection (a), sustained in the line of 
                duty by the officer, if the officer was 
                exposed, while on duty, to one or more 
                traumatic events and such exposure was a 
                substantial factor in the disorder;
                  (B) post-traumatic stress disorder, acute 
                stress disorder, or trauma and stress related 
                disorders, suffered by a public safety officer 
                who has contacted or attempted to contact the 
                employee assistance program of the agency or 
                entity that the officer serves, a licensed 
                medical or mental health professional, suicide 
                prevention services, or another mental health 
                assistance service in order to receive help, 
                treatment, or diagnosis for post-traumatic 
                stress disorder or acute stress disorder, shall 
                be presumed to constitute a personal injury 
                within the meaning of subsection (a), sustained 
                in the line of duty by the officer, if the 
                officer, was exposed, while on duty, to one or 
                more traumatic events and such exposure was a 
                substantial factor in the disorder; and
                  (C) post-traumatic stress disorder, acute 
                stress disorder, or trauma and stress related 
                disorders, suffered by a public safety officer 
                who was exposed, while on duty, to one or more 
                traumatic events shall be presumed to 
                constitute a personal injury within the meaning 
                of subsection (a), sustained in the line of 
                duty by the officer if such exposure was a 
                substantial factor in the disorder.
          (3) Presumption of death or total disability.--A 
        public safety officer shall be presumed to have died or 
        become permanently and totally disabled (within the 
        meaning of subsection (a) or (b)) as the direct and 
        proximate result of a personal injury sustained in the 
        line of duty, if (as determined by the Bureau) the 
        officer either--
                  (A) took an action, which action was intended 
                to bring about the officer's death and directly 
                and proximately resulted in such officer's 
                death or permanent and total disability and 
                exposure to one or more traumatic events was a 
                substantial factor in the action taken by the 
                officer; or
                  (B) took an action within 45 days of the end 
                of exposure to a traumatic event, which action 
                was intended to bring about the officer's death 
                and directly and proximately resulted in such 
                officer's death or permanent and total 
                disability, if such action was not inconsistent 
                with a psychiatric disorder.
          (4) Applicability of limitations on benefits.--
                  (A) Intentional actions.--Section 1202(a)(1) 
                shall not apply to any claim for a benefit 
                under this part that is payable in accordance 
                with this subsection.
                  (B) Substance use.--Section 1202(a)(2) shall 
                not preclude the payment of a benefit under 
                this part if the benefit is otherwise payable 
                in accordance with this subsection.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                              definitions

  Sec. 1204. As used in this part--
          (1) ``action outside of jurisdiction'' means an 
        action, not in the course of any compensated employment 
        involving either the performance of public safety 
        activity or the provision of security services, by a 
        law enforcement officer, firefighter, or member of a 
        rescue squad or ambulance crew that--
                  (A) was taken in a jurisdiction where--
                          (i) the law enforcement officer or 
                        firefighter then was not authorized to 
                        act, in the ordinary course, in an 
                        official capacity; or
                          (ii) the member of a rescue squad or 
                        ambulance crew then was not authorized 
                        or licensed to act, in the ordinary 
                        course, by law or by the applicable 
                        agency or entity;
                  (B) then would have been within the authority 
                and line of duty of--
                          (i) a law enforcement officer or a 
                        firefighter to take, who was authorized 
                        to act, in the ordinary course, in an 
                        official capacity, in the jurisdiction 
                        where the action was taken; or
                          (ii) a member of a rescue squad or 
                        ambulance crew to take, who was 
                        authorized or licensed by law and by a 
                        pertinent agency or entity to act, in 
                        the ordinary course, in the 
                        jurisdiction where the action was 
                        taken; and
                  (C) was, in an emergency situation that 
                presented an imminent and significant danger or 
                threat to human life or of serious bodily harm 
                to any individual, taken--
                          (i) by a law enforcement officer--
                                  (I) to prevent, halt, or 
                                respond to the immediate 
                                consequences of a crime 
                                (including an incident of 
                                juvenile delinquency); or
                                  (II) while engaging in a 
                                rescue activity or in the 
                                provision of emergency medical 
                                services;
                          (ii) by a firefighter--
                                  (I) while engaging in fire 
                                suppression; or
                                  (II) while engaging in a 
                                rescue activity or in the 
                                provision of emergency medical 
                                services; or
                          (iii) by a member of a rescue squad 
                        or ambulance crew, while engaging in a 
                        rescue activity or in the provision of 
                        emergency medical services;
          (2) ``candidate officer'' means an individual who is 
        enrolled or admitted, as a cadet or trainee, in a 
        formal and officially established program of 
        instruction or of training (such as a police or fire 
        academy) that is specifically intended to result upon 
        completion, in the--
                  (A) commissioning of such individual as a law 
                enforcement officer;
                  (B) conferral upon such individual of 
                official authority to engage in fire 
                suppression (as an officer or employee of a 
                public fire department or as an officially 
                recognized or designated member of a legally 
                organized volunteer fire department); or
                  (C) granting to such individual official 
                authorization or license to engage in a rescue 
                activity, or in the provision of emergency 
                medical services, as a member of a rescue 
                squad, or as a member of an ambulance crew that 
                is (or is a part of) the agency or entity that 
                is sponsoring the individual's enrollment or 
                admission;
          (3) ``blind'' means an individual who has central 
        visual acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye with 
        the use of a correcting lens or whose eye is 
        accompanied by a limitation in the fields of vision 
        such that the widest diameter of the visual field 
        subtends an angle no greater than 20 degrees;
          (4) ``catastrophic injury'' means an injury, the 
        direct and proximate result of which is to permanently 
        render an individual functionally incapable (including 
        through a directly and proximately resulting 
        neurocognitive disorder), based on the state of 
        medicine on the date on which the claim is determined 
        by the Bureau, of performing work, including sedentary 
        work: Provided, That, if it appears that a claimant may 
        be functionally capable of performing work--
                  (A) the Bureau shall disregard work where any 
                compensation provided is de minimis, nominal, 
                honorary, or mere reimbursement of incidental 
                expenses, such as--
                          (i) work that involves ordinary or 
                        simple tasks, that because of the 
                        claimed disability, the claimant cannot 
                        perform without significantly more 
                        supervision, accommodation, or 
                        assistance than is typically provided 
                        to an individual without the claimed 
                        disability doing similar work;
                          (ii) work that involves minimal 
                        duties that make few or no demands on 
                        the claimant and are of little or no 
                        economic value to the employer; or
                          (iii) work that is performed 
                        primarily for therapeutic purposes and 
                        aids the claimant in the physical or 
                        mental recovery from the claimed 
                        disability; and
                  (B) the claimant shall be presumed, absent 
                clear and convincing medical evidence to the 
                contrary as determined by the Bureau, to be 
                functionally incapable of performing such work 
                if the direct and proximate result of the 
                injury renders the claimant--
                          (i) blind;
                          (ii) parapalegic; or
                          (iii) quadriplegic;
          (5) ``chaplain'' includes any individual serving as 
        an officially recognized or designated member of a 
        legally organized volunteer fire department or legally 
        organized police department, or an officially 
        recognized or designated public employee of a legally 
        organized fire or police department who was responding 
        to a fire, rescue, or police emergency;
          (6) ``child'' means any natural, illegitimate, 
        adopted, or posthumous child or stepchild of a deceased 
        or permanently and totally disabled public safety 
        officer who, at the time of the public safety officer's 
        death or fatal injury (in connection with any claim 
        predicated upon such death or injury) or the date of 
        the public safety officer's catastrophic injury or of 
        the final determination by the Bureau of any claim 
        predicated upon such catastrophic injury, is--
                  (A) 18 years of age or under;
                  (B) over 18 years of age and a student as 
                defined in section 8101 of title 5, United 
                States Code; or
                  (C) over 18 years of age and incapable of 
                self-support because of physical or mental 
                disability;
          (7) ``firefighter'' includes an individual serving as 
        an officially recognized or designated member of a 
        legally organized volunteer fire department, including 
        an individual who, as such a member, engages in scene 
        security or traffic management as the primary or only 
        duty of the individual during emergency response;
          (8) ``intoxication'' means a disturbance of mental or 
        physical faculties resulting from the introduction of 
        alcohol into the body as evidence by--
                  (A) a post-injury blood alcohol level of .20 
                per centum or greater; or
                  (B) a post-injury blood alcohol level of at 
                least .10 per centum but less than .20 per 
                centum unless the Bureau receives convincing 
                evidence that the public safety officer was not 
                acting in an intoxicated manner immediately 
                prior to his fatal or catastrophic injury;
        or resulting from drugs or other substances in the 
        body;
          (9) ``law enforcement officer'' means an individual 
        involved in crime and juvenile delinquency control or 
        reduction, or enforcement of the criminal laws 
        (including juvenile delinquency), including, but not 
        limited to, police, corrections, probation, parole, and 
        judicial officers;
          (10) ``member of a rescue squad or ambulance crew'' 
        means an officially recognized or designated employee 
        or volunteer member of a rescue squad or ambulance crew 
        (including a ground or air ambulance service) that--
                  (A) is a public agency; or
                  (B) is (or is a part of) a nonprofit entity 
                serving the public that--
                          (i) is officially authorized or 
                        licensed to engage in rescue activity 
                        or to provide emergency medical 
                        services; and
                          (ii) engages in rescue activities or 
                        provides emergency medical services as 
                        part of an official emergency response 
                        system;
          (11) ``neurocognitive disorder'' means a disorder 
        that is characterized by a clinically significant 
        decline in cognitive functioning and may include 
        symptoms and signs such as disturbances in memory, 
        executive functioning (that is, higher-level cognitive 
        processes, such as, regulating attention, planning, 
        inhibiting responses, decision-making), visual-spatial 
        functioning, language, speech, perception, insight, 
        judgment, or an insensitivity to social standards[; 
        and];
          (12) ``sedentary work'' means work that--
                  (A) involves lifting articles weighing no 
                more than 10 pounds at a time or occasionally 
                lifting or carrying articles such as docket 
                files, ledgers, or small tools; and
                  (B) despite involving sitting on a regular 
                basis, may require walking or standing on an 
                occasional [basis.] basis;
          (13) ``public agency'' means the United States, any 
        State of the United States, the District of Columbia, 
        the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands of 
        the United States, Guam, American Samoa, the Trust 
        Territory of the Pacific Islands, the Commonwealth of 
        the Northern Mariana Islands, and any territory or 
        possession of the United States, or any unit of local 
        government, agency, or instrumentality of any of the 
        foregoing, and includes (as may be prescribed by 
        regulation hereunder) a legally organized volunteer 
        fire department that is a nonprofit entity and provides 
        services without regard to any particular relationship 
        (such as a subscription) a member of the public may 
        have with such a department; and
          (14) ``public safety officer'' means--
                  (A) an individual serving a public agency in 
                an official capacity, with or without 
                compensation, as a law enforcement officer, as 
                a firefighter, or as a chaplain: Provided, That 
                (notwithstanding section 1205(b)(2) or (3)) the 
                Bureau shall, absent clear and convincing 
                evidence to the contrary as determined by the 
                Bureau, deem the actions outside of 
                jurisdiction taken by any such law enforcement 
                officer or firefighter, to have been taken 
                while serving such public agency in such 
                capacity, in any case in which the principal 
                legal officer of such public agency, and the 
                head of such agency, together, certify that 
                such actions--
                          (i) were not unreasonable;
                          (ii) would have been within the 
                        authority and line of duty of such law 
                        enforcement officer or such firefighter 
                        to take, had they been taken in a 
                        jurisdiction where such law enforcement 
                        officer or firefighter was authorized 
                        to act, in the ordinary course, in an 
                        official capacity; and
                          (iii) would have resulted in the 
                        payment of full line-of-duty death or 
                        disability benefits (as applicable), if 
                        any such benefits typically were 
                        payable by (or with respect to or on 
                        behalf of) such public agency, as of 
                        the date the actions were taken;
                  (B) a candidate officer who is engaging in an 
                activity or exercise that itself is a formal or 
                required part of the program in which the 
                candidate officer is enrolled or admitted, as 
                provided in this section;
                  (C) an employee of the Federal Emergency 
                Management Agency who is performing official 
                duties of the Agency in an area, if those 
                official duties--
                          (i) are related to a major disaster 
                        or emergency that has been, or is 
                        later, declared to exist with respect 
                        to the area under the Robert T. 
                        Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency 
                        Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5121 et 
                        seq.); and
                          (ii) are determined by the Director 
                        of the Federal Emergency Management 
                        Agency to be hazardous duties;
                  (D) an employee of a State, local, or tribal 
                emergency management or civil defense agency 
                who is performing official duties in 
                cooperation with the Federal Emergency 
                Management Agency in an area, if those official 
                duties--
                          (i) are related to a major disaster 
                        or emergency that has been, or is 
                        later, declared to exist with respect 
                        to the area under the Robert T. 
                        Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency 
                        Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5121 et 
                        seq.); and
                          (ii) are determined by the head of 
                        the agency to be hazardous duties;
                  (E) a member of a rescue squad or ambulance 
                crew who, as authorized or licensed by law and 
                by the applicable agency or entity, is engaging 
                in rescue activity or in the provision of 
                emergency medical services: Provided, That 
                (notwithstanding section 1205(b)(2) or (3)) the 
                Bureau shall, absent clear and convincing 
                evidence to the contrary as determined by the 
                Bureau, deem the actions outside of 
                jurisdiction taken by any such member to have 
                been thus authorized or licensed, in any case 
                in which the principal legal officer of such 
                agency or entity, and the head of such agency 
                or entity, together, certify that such 
                actions--
                          (i) were not unreasonable;
                          (ii) would have been within the 
                        authority and line of duty of such 
                        member to take, had they been taken in 
                        a jurisdiction where such member was 
                        authorized or licensed by law and by a 
                        pertinent agency or entity to act, in 
                        the ordinary course; and
                          (iii) would have resulted in the 
                        payment of full line-of-duty death or 
                        disability benefits (as applicable), if 
                        any such benefits typically were 
                        payable by (or with respect to or on 
                        behalf of) such applicable agency or 
                        entity, as of the date the action was 
                        taken;
                  (F) an individual appointed to the National 
                Disaster Medical System under section 2812 of 
                the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 300hh-
                11) who is performing official duties of the 
                Department of Health and Human Services, if 
                those official duties are--
                          (i) related to responding to a public 
                        health emergency or potential public 
                        health emergency, or other activities 
                        for which the Secretary of Health and 
                        Human Services has activated such 
                        National Disaster Medical System; and
                          (ii) determined by the Secretary of 
                        Health and Human Services to be 
                        hazardous; or
                  [(F)] (G) an employee or contractor of the 
                Department of Energy who--
                          (i) is--
                                  (I) a nuclear materials 
                                courier (as defined in section 
                                8331(27) of title 5, United 
                                States Code); or
                                  (II) designated by the 
                                Secretary of Energy as a member 
                                of an emergency response team; 
                                and
                          (ii) is performing official duties of 
                        the Department, pursuant to a 
                        deployment order issued by the 
                        Secretary, to protect the public, 
                        property, or the interests of the 
                        United States by--
                                  (I) assessing, locating, 
                                identifying, securing, 
                                rendering safe, or disposing of 
                                weapons of mass destruction (as 
                                defined in section 1403 of the 
                                Defense Against Weapons of Mass 
                                Destruction Act of 1996 (50 
                                U.S.C. 2302)); or
                                  (II) managing the immediate 
                                consequences of a radiological 
                                release or exposure.

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