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Tab 1: Presumptive Legislation for Firefighters in Canada

  • Content last reviewed: June 2009

Letter | Review | Tab 1 | Tab 2 | Tab 3 ]

In general, the following applies:

  1. All jurisdictions require that the firefighter is regularly exposed to the hazards of a fire scene; this eliminates non-exposed work such as administrative, prevention and community outreach activities.
  2. All jurisdictions exclude "exposure at forest fires" from consideration. Therefore, forest firefighters do not benefit from a presumption.
Presumptive Legislation for Firefighters in Canada
  British Columbia Alberta Saskatchewan Manitoba Nova Scotia
Full-Time Firefighters Covered by Presumptive Legislation Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Part-Time/Volunteer Firefighters Covered by Presumptive Legislation Yes No No Yes Yes [ 7 ]
Effective Date of Presumptive Legislation April 11, 2005 April 9, 2003
Regulation updated December 14, 2005
May 27, 2003
Regulation updated March 1, 2006
May 23, 2002
New Sections updated June 9, 2005
May 22, 2003
Regulation effective July 30, 2003
Retroactivity and Application Date for Full-Time Firefighters Non-retroactive
April 11, 2005[ 5 ]
Non-retroactive
April 9, 2003
Non-retroactive
May 27, 2003[ 6 ]
Retroactive
January 1, 1992
Retroactive
January 1, 1993
Retroactivity and Application Date for PartTime/Volunteer Firefighters Non-retroactive
April 11, 2005
n/a n/a Non-retroactive
June 9, 2005
Retroactive
January 1, 1993


Minimum Exposure Period in Presumptive Legislation per Conditions Covered by Presumptive Legislation
Conditions Covered by Presumptive Legislation British Columbia Alberta Saskatchewan Manitoba Nova Scotia
Brain Cancer 10 years 10 years 10 years 10 years 10 years
Bladder Cancer 15 years 15 years 15 years 15 years 15 years
Kidney Cancer 20 years 20 years 20 years 20 years 20 years
Colorectal Cancer 20 years n/a 15 years 15 years n/a
Colon Cancer n/a 20 years n/a n/a 20 years
Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma 20 years 20 years 20 years 20 years 20 years
Leukemia 5 years 5 years 5 years 5 years 5 years
Ureter Cancer 15 years 15 years 15 years 15 years n/a
Testicular Cancer n/a n/a 20 years n/a n/a
Lung Cancer n/a n/a 15 years[ * ] 15 years[ * ] n/a
Lymphoid Leukemia n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a
Heart Injury Within 24 hours[ 8 ] Within 24 hours[ 8 ] Within 24 hours Within 24 hours n/a

[ 5 ] Presumption applies to firefighters who were first disabled with one of the prescribed cancers on or after April 11, 2005. Related Regulations made on or before January 1, 2006 can be made retroactive to a date on or after April 11, 2005

[ 6 ] Case-by-case reconsiderations made if requested to review a denied claim for decisions made prior to enacting of presumption under Sask Pol

[ 7 ] Presumption applies to part-time firefighters provided they participated in 20% of all fire department activities

[ 8 ] Heart injury and firefighters not under presumptive legislation but specified in BC policy #15.15 June 2000

[ 9 ] Myocardial infarction specified in Section 24.1 (7) of AB Workers' Compensation Act

[ * ] Presumption for lung cancer applies only to non-smokers, minimum period of time as non-smoker specified in Sask Regulation 13/2006 and MB Regulation 160/2005 respectively.

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