‘CANCER IS KILLING OUR FIREFIGHTERS’: MISSOURI WIDOW’S COURT WIN MAY AID THOSE AT RISK
Working with Gladstone Firefighter Dave Cheney’s family for more than a decade, firm partner J.R. Boyd, along with associate Jason Iezzi, were able to secure the first decision in Missouri to uphold the rights of firefighters to receive compensation for job-related cancer. The burden of proof is reversed in Missouri, Kansas and a dozen other states.
In Missouri, firefighters must establish “a direct causal relationship” to get benefits, which requires lots of documentation. And then the statute covers only cancers affecting the lungs or respiratory tracts, not cancer of the lymphatic system, the kind that killed Dave Cheney.
“It’s as worthless as a butter knife in a gunfight,” Boyd said.
Efforts to improve the law have failed in the Missouri legislature the last several sessions. Until that happens, the Cheney decision should give other firefighters and their survivors a better shot at receiving compensation for work-related illnesses. Read more