299A.465 CONTINUED HEALTH INSURANCE COVERAGE.
Subdivision 1. Officer or firefighter disabled in line of duty.
(a) This subdivision applies
when a peace officer or firefighter suffers a disabling injury that:
(1) results in the officer's or firefighter's retirement or separation from service;
(2) occurs while the officer or firefighter is acting in the course and scope of duties as a
peace officer or firefighter; and
(3) the officer or firefighter has been approved to receive the officer's or firefighter's
duty-related disability pension.
(b) The officer's or firefighter's employer shall continue to provide health coverage for:
(1) the officer or firefighter; and
(2) the officer's or firefighter's dependents if the officer or firefighter was receiving dependent
coverage at the time of the injury under the employer's group health plan.
(c) The employer is responsible for the continued payment of the employer's contribution for
coverage of the officer or firefighter and, if applicable, the officer's or firefighter's dependents.
Coverage must continue for the officer or firefighter and, if applicable, the officer's or firefighter's
dependents until the officer or firefighter reaches the age of 65. However, coverage for dependents
does not have to be continued after the person is no longer a dependent.
Subd. 2. Officer or firefighter killed in line of duty.
(a) This subdivision applies when a
peace officer or firefighter is killed while on duty and discharging the officer's or firefighter's
duties as a peace officer or firefighter.
(b) The officer's or firefighter's employer shall continue to cover the deceased officer's or
firefighter's dependents, including the officer's or firefighter's spouse:
(1) if the officer or firefighter was receiving dependent coverage at the time of the officer's or
firefighter's death under the employer's group health plan; or
(2) if the officer's or firefighter's spouse was not covered as a dependent at the time of the
officer's or firefighter's death, but at that time was eligible, or afterward becomes eligible, to be a
dependent on the employer's group health plan.
(c) The employer is responsible for the employer's contribution for the coverage of the
officer's or firefighter's dependents. Coverage must continue for a dependent of the officer or
firefighter for the period of time that the person is a dependent up to the age of 65.
Subd. 3. Coordination of benefits.
Health insurance benefits payable to the officer or
firefighter and the officer's or firefighter's dependents from any other source provide the primary
coverage, and coverage available under this section is secondary.
Subd. 4. Public employer reimbursement.
A public employer subject to this section may
annually apply by August 1 for the preceding fiscal year to the commissioner of public safety
for reimbursement to help defray a portion of its costs of complying with this section. The
commissioner shall provide an equal pro rata share to the public employer out of the public safety
officer's benefit account based on the availability of funds for each eligible officer, firefighter, and
qualifying dependents. Individual shares must not exceed the actual costs of providing coverage
under this section by a public employer.
Subd. 5. Definition.
For purposes of this section:
(a) "Peace officer" or "officer" has the meaning given in section
626.84, subdivision 1
(b) "Dependent" means a person who meets the definition of dependent in section
, at the time of the officer's or firefighter's injury or death. A person is not a
dependent for purposes of this section during the period of time the person is covered under
another group health plan.
(c) "Firefighter" has the meaning given in Minnesota Statutes 2000, section
, but does
not include volunteer firefighters.
Subd. 6. Determination of scope and duties.
(a) Whenever a peace officer or firefighter
has been approved to receive a duty-related disability pension, the officer or firefighter may
apply to the panel established in subdivision 7 for a determination of whether or not the officer
or firefighter meets the requirements in subdivision 1, paragraph (a), clause (2). In making this
decision, the panel shall determine whether or not the officer's or firefighter's occupational
duties or professional responsibilities put the officer or firefighter at risk for the type of illness
or injury actually sustained. A final determination by the panel is binding on the applicant and
the employer, subject to any right of judicial review. Applications must be made within 90 days
of receipt of approval of a duty-related pension and must be acted upon by the panel within 90
days of receipt. Applications that are not acted upon within 90 days of receipt by the panel are
approved. Applications and supporting documents are private data.
(b) This subdivision expires July 1, 2008.
Subd. 7. Course and scope of duties panel.
(a) A panel is established for the purpose set
forth in subdivision 6, composed of the following seven members:
(1) two members recommended by the Minnesota League of Cities or a successor;
(2) one member recommended by the Association of Minnesota Counties or a successor;
(3) two members recommended by the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association
or a successor;
(4) one member recommended by the Minnesota Professional Firefighters Association
or a successor; and
(5) one nonorganizational member recommended by the six organizational members.
(b) Recommendations must be forwarded to the commissioner of public safety who shall
appoint the recommended members after determining that they were properly recommended.
Members shall serve for two years or until their successors have been seated. No member
may serve more than three consecutive terms. Vacancies on the panel must be filled by
recommendation by the organization whose representative's seat has been vacated. A vacancy
of the nonorganizational seat must be filled by the recommendation of the panel. Vacancies
may be declared by the panel in cases of resignation or when a member misses three or more
consecutive meetings, or by a nominating organization when its nominee is no longer a member
in good standing of the organization, an employee of the organization, or an employee of a
member in good standing of the organization. A member appointed because of a vacancy shall
serve until the expiration of the vacated term.
(c) Panel members shall be reimbursed for expenses related to their duties according to
15.059, subdivision 3
, paragraph (a), but shall not receive compensation or per diem
payments. The panel's proceedings and determinations constitute a quasi-judicial process and its
operation must comply with chapter 14. Membership on the panel does not constitute holding
a public office and members of the panel are not required to take and file oaths of office or
submit a public official's bond before serving on the panel. No member of the panel may be
disqualified from holding any public office or employment by reason of being appointed to the
panel. Members of the panel and staff or consultants working with the panel are covered by the
immunity provision in section
214.34, subdivision 2
. The panel shall elect a chair and adopt rules
of order. The panel shall convene no later than July 1, 2005.
(d) This subdivision expires July 1, 2008.
History: 1997 c 239 art 8 s 6; 1999 c 12 s 1; 2002 c 392 art 1 s 8; 1Sp2003 c 2 art 4 s 4;
1Sp2003 c 19 art 2 s 49; 2005 c 136 art 8 s 7,8