20 CFR § 10.738 - Under what circumstances are benefits payable in LEO claims?
(a) Benefits are payable when an officer is injured while apprehending, or attempting to apprehend, an individual for the commission of a Federal crime. However, either an actual Federal crime must be in progress or have been committed, or objective evidence (of which the officer is aware at the time of injury) must exist that a potential Federal crime was in progress or had already been committed. The actual or potential Federal crime must be an integral part of the criminal activity toward which the officer's actions are directed. The fact that an injury to an officer is related in some way to the commission of a Federal crime does not necessarily bring the injury within the coverage of the FECA. The FECA is not intended to cover officers who are merely enforcing local laws.
(b) For benefits to be payable when an officer is injured preventing, or attempting to prevent, a Federal crime, there must be objective evidence that a Federal crime is about to be committed. An officer's belief, unsupported by objective evidence, that he or she is acting to prevent the commission of a Federal crime will not result in coverage. Moreover, the officer's subjective intent, as measured by all available evidence (including the officer's own statements and testimony, if available), must have been directed toward the prevention of a Federal crime. In this context, an officer's own statements and testimony are relevant to, but do not control, the determination of coverage.