Tragically, a multitude of veterans, families, and civilians was exposed to toxic water while stationed at Camp LeJeune. In 2014, the Supreme Court declared in an overwhelming 7-2 decision that North Carolina’s 10-year statute of repose was paramount over federal law – which permits victims two years after toxic exposure is confirmed to pursue claims.
Congress took action to prevent further injustice by passing the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022, which grants victims up to 2024 August to pursue legal action.
This allows them more time to bring their lawsuit in U.S. District Court located in Eastern North Carolina if they lived or worked at the facility between 1953 and 1987 or were unborn children who became affected by this tragedy. If you’re a veteran, reservist, or guardsman interested in filing a Camp Lejeune claim, there are various eligibility criteria you must meet.
Eligibility to File a Claim
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) acknowledged the link between health conditions and veterans who resided at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, during which they were exposed to contaminants including trichloroethylene (TCE), tetrachloroethylene (PCE), and vinyl chloride, among others.
A veteran, former reservist, or member of the National Guard is eligible for VA health benefits if they served at any of the affected bases, either through being stationed there or by traveling as part of professional duties and were active on duty for a minimum period of 30 days during 1953-1987.
As a veteran, if you have evidence proving your extended stay on the military installation as well as medical records showcasing illnesses caused by exposure to pollutants, then it is feasible for you to file a claim. Furthermore, applicants may be required to provide proof of their ailments in the form of health documents.
Some common qualifying medical conditions include a wide range of serious health issues, such as different types of cancer, adult leukemia, infertility, miscarriages, and birth defects.
Compensation and Benefits
Obtaining monetary settlement for Camp Lejeune injuries hinges on the severity of the damages and your legal team’s capability to prove that they are linked to consuming contaminated water.
There is an extensive scope of harm from this hazardous drinking water, with settlements also varying based on the type of injury endured. Women veterans and spouses who were pregnant while at the military base are also eligible for financial backing if their child suffered a birth defect due to it.
Generally, veterans who have been able to successfully establish a connection between their injury and consumption of the contaminated water at the base are eligible for health benefits such as comprehensive medical care, financial compensation for lost wages or impairment of earning capacity, and lifetime disability payments.
The idea of having to live with a life-altering injury is overwhelming, especially when it could have been easily avoided. For those affected, the Camp Lejeune Justice Act grants you extra time to access justice and seek compensation for any illness suffered due to exposure.
If your military service meets the above qualifications, don’t hesitate to act toward reclaiming the rights that have been violated. You deserve to be financially compensated for these negligent actions that could have been avoided.