The United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers veterans a variety of benefits, including health care and compensation for those who were injured or contracted a disease in relation to their service.
Unfortunately, obtaining these benefits can often be a struggle, with the VA denying a large percentage of claims. For claims related to the Camp Lejeune water contamination between 1953 and 1987, less than 25% of claims get approved yearly, with those numbers dropping to 1% in 2015.
If you suffered damages related to the Camp Lejeune water contamination, an experienced attorney at White Law PLLC can help you fight for the compensation you deserve.
What Happened at Camp Lejeune?
Between 1953 and 1987, the main water supply at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in North Carolina was polluted by a variety of toxins. Approximately one million people were exposed to this water in a significant manner over this period, which has resulted in many different health problems for those who lived and worked on the base.
The chemicals that were found in the greatest concentrations were trichloroethylene (TCE), perchloroethylene (PCE), dichloroethane (DCE), vinyl chloride, and benzene. These substances have been linked to a variety of cancers, neurological disorders, and birth defects.
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Pursuing a Claim Through the VA
Until August 10, 2022, the only option for recovering compensation for damages caused by the polluted water was through a claim with the VA. Unfortunately, due to the high rate of denial for Camp Lejeune claims, this restriction meant that many victims of this tragedy were forced to cover all of their medical costs out of their own pocket.
In order to qualify for a VA benefits claim in relation to the Camp Lejeune water contamination, you must have:
- Been stationed at Camp Lejeune or Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) New River
- Served at least 30 days between August 1953 and December 1987
- Been diagnosed with a presumptive illness related to the contamination
- Not been dishonorably discharged
For VA benefits, presumptive illnesses related to Camp Lejeune include:
- Adult leukemia
- Aplastic anemia and other myelodysplastic syndromes
- Bladder cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Liver cancer
- Multiple myeloma
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Parkinson’s disease
In addition to veterans, their spouses and children may be able to obtain compensation to reimburse their healthcare expenses if they lived on the base between August 1, 1953, and December 31, 1987, depending on when they received care for their qualifying condition.
The presumptive conditions listed above are far from the only illnesses that have been connected with the water contamination at Camp Lejeune. However, recovering VA benefits for non-presumptive conditions will be far more difficult. You are far more likely to get the money you need through a Camp Lejeune lawsuit.
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act (CLJA) was passed as part of the Honoring Our PACT Act on August 10, 2022. The CLJA gives victims of the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune the opportunity to file a lawsuit to recover damages.
Until this act was passed, Camp Lejeune victims were barred from filing a lawsuit, and their only option for compensation in any form was through a VA claim. Now that the CLJA has passed, it is imperative that you act quickly in order to recover compensation. The CLJA provides victims with two years to file a compensation claim and pursue damages.
An experienced personal injury attorney can help you prepare your claim and file a lawsuit to get the money you need. Don’t let this opportunity to get the compensation you deserve pass you by.
We know how to get our clients the results they need in the toughest legal arenas.
Contact a Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Attorney Today
If you or a loved one were at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987, and contracted an illness that has been linked to the chemicals found in the water there, you may be able to recover compensation through a VA compensation claim or a lawsuit.
However, it is critical not to attempt to pursue compensation on your own. Hiring an experienced personal injury attorney will give you a far greater chance of recovering the compensation you need. Don’t hesitate to get started today, as delays may result in losing your right to pursue compensation.
At White Law PLLC, we are committed to helping victims recover fair compensation for their damages. Contact us today by phone or through our online contact form to schedule a free case review with a member of our team.
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