Were you or a loved one stationed at or working at Camp Lejeune Marine Base in North Carolina anytime between 1953-1987? If so, you still have time to file a federal tort claim and recover compensation for your exposure to toxic chemicals found in the drinking water during those years. As many as one million active duty service members, civilian workers, and dependents may qualify for Camp Lejeune settlements.
People affected by the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune military base have until August 10, 2024, to file a claim. If you already filed a claim and it was denied, you should immediately consult with a personal injury lawyer at Regan Zambri Long, as you only have six months to appeal the denial.
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Whether you were a service member, contractor, dependent, or visitor at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987, if you were harmed by the Camp Lejeune water contamination you deserve justice. The attorneys at Regan Zambri Long are committed to pursuing justice on your behalf and recovering the compensation your injuries and/or medical conditions require. We will review the Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Claims timeline and discuss your legal options.
If you believe you qualify for a potential Camp Lejeune lawsuit, schedule a free case evaluation to with our Camp Lejeune lawyers online or by calling 202-960-4596.
Although you have until August 10, 2024, to file a claim against Camp Lejeune, it is in your best interest to begin building your case now. An experienced personal injury lawyer at Regan Zambri Long will review your case, considering the scientific and medical evidence, to determine your eligibility for a Camp Lejeune lawsuit.
Thanks to the PACT Act, you no longer need to definitively prove that certain medical conditions are the result of the toxic water you were exposed to on the base.
If your condition is not one of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) “presumptive conditions,” you will need to gather proof and documentation of your condition. This means you will need to consult with doctors and medical professionals to help establish a link between your health condition and the dangerous chemicals in the drinking water.
Military personnel who were exposed to toxic substances in Camp Lejeune’s drinking water are eligible to claim VA disability benefits and health care for their health conditions. Currently, eight conditions are considered presumptive conditions by the VA, meaning that you do not need to provide a definitive link between your time at Camp Lejeune and your health. These conditions are:
Additionally, Camp Lejeune residents, both military service members, and family members can claim VA benefits to compensate out-of-pocket costs for any of 15 other qualifying conditions, including various cancers, female infertility and miscarriage, renal toxicity, and others.
People affected by the toxic chemicals found in Camp Lejeune’s water supply may suffer various health conditions related to the chemicals found in the water, including trichloroethylene (TCE), tetrachloroethylene (PCE), vinyl chloride (VC), and benzene. Conditions Camp Lejeune victims may experience can include:
These conditions have been found by the CDC and its Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry to have sufficient evidence of causation when exposed to a specific chemical.
Research into other diseases and conditions shows a link between a specific chemical and diagnosis but not enough link yet to make a definitive conclusion. These conditions include:
Finally, a whole host of other conditions and health effects have had positive findings in studies evaluating the exposure. These can include low birth weight, fetal death or miscarriage, several cancers, neurological effects, and neurobehavioral performance deficits.
If you or a loved one spent 30 days or more at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987 and have experienced any of the recognized health effects or conditions, you should consult with both your doctor and an experienced personal injury lawyer at Regan Zambri Long to begin filing your Camp Lejeune contaminated drinking water claim.
After your eligibility for a Camp Lejeune water claim has been established, you will work with your Camp Lejeune lawyer to prepare your claim, which includes documentation that you lived or worked at the base during years of contamination at Camp Lejeune occurred and that you either have one of the presumptive conditions or you have another medical condition that can be definitively linked to the contaminated water supply.
Once your evidence and documents have been compiled, your lawyer will submit the claim to the Judge Advocate General Tort Claims Unit, which has 180 days to respond to your claim with a settlement offer or a denial.
If your claim is denied or you and your lawyer determine the settlement offer is not enough, you may file a Camp Lejeune lawsuit to seek compensation appropriate to your exposure to toxic chemicals and the resulting injuries and suffering you experienced.
The CDC estimates that as many as one million people may have been affected by the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987.
In 1982, the Marine Corps discovered that two of the camp’s eight water treatment plants were producing drinking water contaminated with volatile organic compounds including TCE, PCE, VC, and benzene. These volatile organic compounds have been linked with various health conditions by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR).
ATSDR methodically reconstructed historical contamination concentrations to determine that the plant at Tarawa Terrace exceeded the maximum contaminant levels, established by the Environmental Protection Agency, from November 1957 to February 1987, though the most contaminated wells were shut down in February 1985. Many of these contaminants came from waste disposal sites for an off-base dry cleaner.
The Hadnot Point treatment plant was also found to have exceeded maximum levels between August 1953 and January 1985. The source of this water contamination was waste disposal sites and underground storage tanks.
ATSDR has been monitoring and assessing health risks for Camp Lejeune personnel and their families since the late 1980s.
Victims of the contaminated water situation had little to no legal recourse in the years that followed, though in 2012 the Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act was passed, allowing veterans to receive benefits and health care if they were stationed at Camp Lejeune during the contaminated years.
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act was approved by both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate early in 2022 and was signed by the president in the summer, becoming law in August 2022 as part of the PACT Act.
The act removes some of the loopholes that prevented toxic water victims from receiving the benefits they are owed. However, plaintiffs still have strict eligibility guidelines and in some cases must prove a causal relationship between exposure to toxic substances and the health condition(s) they suffer.
While the act is a step in the right direction, victims will still want to hire an experienced federal tort attorney to help them navigate their Camp Lejeune water contamination case and carry the burden of proof. Regan Zambri Long’s Camp Lejeune attorneys are well-versed in federal tort cases and can help you claim the compensation you deserve.
In August 2022, the Honoring Our PACT Act was signed into law, expanding eligibility of health care benefits and disability benefits to veterans through the Department of Veterans Affairs. One important feature is that several of the diseases and conditions linked with the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune are now presumptive conditions, meaning it is automatically assumed that your service caused the condition.
This eases the burden of proof for some Camp Lejeune Marine Corps veterans, as they no longer have to definitively prove that their service at Camp Lejeune directly caused their health condition or disease.
The PACT Act provides approximately $6.7 billion in funding to care for any veteran or family member affected by the Camp Lejeune water contamination.
At Regan Zambri Long, our mission is justice. We know that too many service members, civilian workers, and their family members have been waiting a long time for justice from the Marine Corps. While recent laws are moving in the right direction for restitution, there is more waiting ahead as claims and Camp Lejeune lawsuits move through the federal court.
Our personal injury lawyers are acquainted with federal tort claims and holding the federal government accountable for the injuries it causes citizens. When you trust your case to Regan Zambri Long, we work tirelessly on your behalf so that you can focus on your healing and recovery.
The dangerous chemicals in the Camp Lejeune water supply from 1953 to 1987 have affected hundreds of thousands of people, people who deserve to hold the federal government and Marine Corps accountable for their actions and breach of trust. If you or your loved one was a victim of the toxic water at Camp Lejeune, schedule a consultation with our federal tort claims attorneys today and begin seeking the financial compensation you are owed.
Because this is an unprecedented situation, it’s uncertain how the U.S. government will proceed with the lawsuits brought against it because of Camp Lejeune’s toxic water. The statute of limitations for filing a claim or lawsuit runs out in August 2024, so claims may be in a state of limbo until the government has a fuller picture of how many victims are seeking justice. Camp Lejeune settlement payouts will likely begin being awarded en masse after the statute of limitations window closes.
It is still early in the process to understand how the government will handle settlements of the various lawsuits Camp Lejeune victims will bring against it because of the contaminated drinking water. However, like other personal injury claims, the amount of compensation you will receive is likely to be based on the severity of your condition or health effect.
It is also possible that conditions more definitively linked to the chemicals found in the water will receive higher settlement offers, compared to those with less scientific and medical evidence behind them.
Estimates suggest that Camp Lejeune settlement amounts may run in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, depending on the severity of the health condition military service members or their family members experienced.
To file a toxic water lawsuit against Camp Lejeune, you must first prove that you lived at, worked at, or visited Camp Lejeune for at least 30 days between 1953 and 1987. The 30 days do not have to be consecutive to qualify for a claim.
You must also be able to prove that you suffered an injury or medical condition because of the water contamination unless yours is one of the presumptive conditions listed above.
If you believe your medical condition could be linked to Camp Lejeune’s contaminated water, you should consult with your doctor, collect your medical records, and meet with Regan Zambri Long’s Camp Lejeune lawyers for a free consultation to discuss your eligibility and next steps.
If you have already filed a Camp Lejeune contaminated water claim and it has been denied, you need to meet with a personal injury attorney immediately. You have six months after receiving the denial notice to appeal the decision, so it is crucial that you don’t waste any time hiring a lawyer to help you navigate the claim.
Every law firm must determine how to collect legal fees from its clients, but at Regan Zambri Long we believe that justice is more important than legal fees. That’s why our attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. We don’t collect any fees until we’ve won a recovery in your favor. If we aren’t successful in claiming your compensation, all legal fees are waived. We believe this allows you to bravely demand the justice you deserve. You can schedule a free case evaluation by calling 202-960-4596.