Fireman’s Rule Law and Legal Definition
Fireman’s rule is a common-law principle that precludes recovery against an individual whose negligence created the very need for the presence of the fire fighter. This rule either bars recovery by a professional rescuer injured in responding to an emergency or requires the rescuer to prove a higher degree of culpability in order to recover. In some states this rule is extended to include police officers and other emergency professionals also.
This rule is not applicable in some U.S states like New Jersey. The New Jersey Legislature has abolished the fireman's rule. N.J. Stat. Ann. § 2A:62A-21 explicitly gives a firefighter a right of action against any party who "directly or indirectly" caused his or her injury through simple neglect. [Roma v. United States, 344 F.3d 352 (3d Cir. N.J. 2003)]
The following is an example of a case law on fireman’s rule:
The fireman's rule is basically the principle that while a fireman may recover for negligence independent of the fire, a landowner is not liable for negligence in causing the fire. One cannot complain of negligence in the creation of the very occasion for his engagement. [White v. Edmond, 971 F.2d 681 (11th Cir. Ga. 1992)]