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Public Safety Officers' Benefits (PSOB) Program: Attorney General's Guide to the Hometown Heroes Survivors' Benefits Act

NCJ Number
Date Published
April 2010
23 pages

After reviewing the history of the Federal Public Safety Officers' Benefits (PSOB) Program established by the U.S. Congress in 1976, this booklet explains the provisions of and how to apply for benefits under the Hometown Heroes Survivors' Benefits (HHSB) Act of 2003, which expands the coverage of the PSOB Program.


The PSOB Program provides death benefits in the form of a one-time financial payment to eligible survivors of public safety officers whose deaths are the direct and proximate result of a personal injury sustained in the line of duty. Benefits are also provided to public safety officers who are permanently and totally disabled due to injuries sustained in the line of duty. In addition, financial assistance is provided to help pay for higher education for the spouses and children of public safety officers for whom PSOB death or disability benefits have been paid. The HHSB expands coverage under the PSOB Program by creating a presumption that a qualifying line-of-duty death has occurred when a public safety officer has a fatal heart attack or stroke up to 24 hours after on-duty, nonroutine stressful or strenuous physical activity or training. This booklet provides details on the information that must be submitted by claimants under the HHSB provisions of the PSOB Program, and it presents a checklist of the documents that should be included with the claim form sent to the PSOB Office. Information is also provided on the appeals process if a claim is denied, as well as how to contact resources for assistance in making a claim or an appeal.