va compensation for camp lejeune water contamination
or The identified source of the contamination was poor waste disposal practices at an off-base dry cleaning company. And that granted some benefits to families who had been exposed. Laura has put her efforts and paralegal skills into getting prostate cancer recognized by the Veterans Affairs Department as an illness that could have been caused by Camp LeJeune’s contaminated water. For example, would a veteran serving 29 days involving a high-risk of exposure be at any less risk than veterans with 30 days of the same exposure? See more of Camp Lejeune Water Contamination on Facebook. And that granted some benefits to families who had been exposed. And they’ll provide them to the veteran and a family member that does have one of these conditions. So you might have realized that some of the conditions for health benefits purposes for family members and some of the presumptive conditions are exactly the same. If this is your situation, you may benefit by filing a new claim under the most current rules. And something we wanted to note is that these rules can apply right to guardsmen and reservists, but that can be complicated, so if you were in the guard, you were a reservist, you’re at camp Lejeune you know, we would definitely suggest that you reach out to an advocate that might be able to help you make that case cause the, the rules are going to be really the rules about the you know, how you would go about direct service connection and everything would be similar but the, but some of the rules are a little bit more complicated and it would probably be wise to get some help. Substances included: More than 70 chemicals have since been identified as contaminants at Lejeune. © Copyright - Marc Whitehead & Associates Attorneys at Law, LLP |. In less than nine years, veterans have filed claims for more than 84,000 conditions related to the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune, according to records released to The Reveal by the VA. Christian: And that could also be found on a VA’s website. Marc Whitehead & Associates, LLP remains open to service our clients and accept new matters during the Coronavirus Pandemic. It actually redirects you outside of VA’s exact website into another one where you can complete it online. Camp Lejeune's 34 years of water contamination ended in 1987, while Rummings was still serving as a medic at the sprawling Onslow County base. 86 Veterans Law Review [Vol. Michelle: Yeah, I think it’s very unique to see them first come out with healthcare benefits. Christian: Exactly, you can’t do that just online. There was Trans-1,2 DCE and these are byproducts of the degrading chemicals of the TCE, PCE, and Benzene. When a veteran in one of these groups is diagnosed with one of those conditions, the VA concludes that the circumstances of that veteran’s service caused the condition, so disability benefits can be swiftly granted. PFAS at Military Installations For more than two decades, the Navy and Marine Corps have supported and assisted the study of possible impacts of water contamination at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C. To date, approximately 4,400 Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) administrative claims have been filed alleging personal injury or wrongful death resulting from exposure to contaminants from the 1950s to the 1980s. Michelle: I think it’s really important to know we’re listing off a bunch of conditions that VA has conceded. As noted via claims and lawsuits filed by veterans’ advocacy organizations at the time, veterans and their loved ones “drank, cooked and bathed” in the polluted waters for years. Veterans must have served at least 30 days (consecutive or nonconsecutive) at the base. You’d have to send it to the evidence intake center, like you would with all other claims. If you applied for disability compensation and have been denied, you must not give up. Do You Qualify for Long Term Disability Benefits? Nearly half of these Lejeune veterans are now deceased. Christine: No, there’s just the form that you use to file a claim generally for benefits from the veterans’ benefits administration. The area included in the presumption is all of U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, and Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) New River, including satellite camps and housing areas. How Can a Social Security Attorney Help Your Crohn’s Disease Disability Claim? So that’s really, that’s really great advice. This chemical exposure may have led to adverse health conditions. The way that the law works is going to be a little bit different. What Medical Criteria Are Needed to Qualify for Social Security Disability Benefits for COPD? So we’re talking 1953 to 1987 then you also needed to be a dependent of the veteran at the time. Presumptive conditions are those diseases that VA presumes were caused by military service, and are tied to groups of veterans in specific circumstances of military service. CCK Recognized for Donations to American Veterans Disabled For Life Memorial, CCK successfully argues for a precedential decision about protected work environment. So what are the presumptive conditions? Log In. a certified practice advisor with Atticus, an organization that provides business training and management skills Christine: Sure. So a spouse, a child, you also needed to be residing at Camp Lejeune as well for 30 cumulative days. It should be sufficient. And there were three treatment facilities that they found that were contaminated, were exposed. That evidence that formed the basis, of the law change can also be submitted, related to a claim for direct service connection. Family members are only eligible to receive healthcare benefits. So the rules for, service members are going to be a little bit different. Christian: So if you filed and we’re gonna get into this. But there’s also evidence that you want to show when submitting your application. So you want to show that you were married to the married or dependent of the veteran. But for family members, there are a few things that they require. So you know, these conditions both, for medical benefits and for disability benefits. Today I’m joined by Christine Clemens and Michelle DeTore. For recent claim denials, you will likely be able to appeal your claim through the new VA appeals system. Christine: Right. Hopefully one day the list of 8 will grow to include all 15 conditions. So what’s the specific Camp Lejeune presumptive policy? Countless stories, complaints, and lawsuits ensued from veterans and their loved ones who, years after their time at Camp Lejeune, had developed devastating cancers and diseases. This information is made available for educational purposes only and to provide general information and a general understanding of the law. That’s a really great point. The other thing to note is that while the presumption for the presumption to apply, you have to have been there for 30 days. PFAS at Military Installations of concern at Camp Lejeune. VA published a final interim rule today regarding Camp Lejeune Water Contaminated Veterans, 82 FR 4173. Find out which hazards you may have come in contact with during military service, and how to file a claim for compensation. Correct. And about 1,000,000 military personnel and family members were stationed there of this Marine Corps base or Marine Air Corps Station New River between 1953 and 1987 when exposures to hazardous chemicals were found to have taken place there. This was the Honoring America’s Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012 (Camp Lejeune Act). If you were stationed or employed at Camp Lejeune between August 1 st, 1953 and December 31 st 1987, chances are you were exposed to significant amount of pollution through the facility’s water supply. So as Christine mentioned in 2012, VA passed the Honoring American Veterans and Caring for Campus Youth and Families Act. This website adheres to the W3C’s AA Accessibility guidelines. Where we get started. Roughly 900,000 veterans and 123,000 reservists were exposed to Lejeune drinking water polluted with industrial chemicals and solvents. They give you the option of completing it online. Since they were stationed at Camp Lejeune, the VA is responsible for providing VA compensation for disabilities that were a result of the contaminated drinking water. And you won’t be redirected for that one. As part of VA’s ongoing commitment to provide quality care to Veterans, the Department of Veterans Affairs has established a presumption of service connection for eight diseases associated with exposure to contaminants in the water supply at Camp Lejeune, N.C. policies, Social Security Disability and Veterans Disability. Camp Lejeune. So when you’re actually doing your application, there’s a form you fill out. How Can I Receive VA Disability Benefits After Burn Pit Exposure? One reason is to ensure consistency with the 2012 Camp Lejeune Act, which enacted the 30-day service requirement for VA health care. Or even less, and we’re talking about this, we’re talking about a 34 year period. Many veterans have filed water contamination claims years ago. By stock photo. Very, very straightforward. If you can show you served at Camp Lejeune from Aug. 1, 1953, to Dec. 31, 1987, for 30 days or more, you are now eligible to file fast-track VA disability compensation claims for one or more those eight conditions. So I’ll start with a longer period. Ten years ago, at age 39, he was diagnosed with breast cancer, a disease on the VA list but rare among men. Photo courtesy of Mike Partain. So–. Christine: So the other thing is, that we had talked about the 30 days cumulative and I just wanted to clarify that. So, whereas family members can only get healthcare benefits. So this is what they came out originally with. And the thing that I think we’ve all talked about offline finding pretty interesting is that the Wells that they had on base. Camp LeJeune has been the subject of concern about Veterans and their families suffering from possible contamination between 1953 and 1987 . Christine: Exactly. [laughing] Do you want to just go through a little bit of the history of what happened at that particular in that particular area? So, you have to have lived or worked at Camp Lejeune or New River for at least 30 cumulative days between the all-important 1953 and 1987. And then, the other thing they require is a form. Family members similarly exposed also became eligible for many of these benefits. So, according to the agency for toxic substances and disease registry, for most of the months within that period which is a 34-year period, on-base water wells contain limits above the EPAs guidelines for all of those chemicals. Exposure To Specific Environmental Hazards | Veterans Affairs Learn about VA disability compensation for illnesses related to environmental hazards. Camp Lejeune, located in Jacksonville, North Carolina, is a 246 square-mile Marine Corps base opened in 1941. And I think people to be aware of is that they’ll pay out of pocket expenses for obviously the date of claim but also up to two years prior to your date of claim. The effective date for this rule is March 14th, 2017 and no earlier. Thursday, February 18, 2016. VA’s decision not to compensate Camp Lejeune Veterans for all of the 15 known health effects related to Camp Lejeune is in direct opposition to the findings stated in departmental guidance. There’s, there’s a, there’s a biological chemical medical link between the exposures and the condition. What Benefits and Services Are Available for Veterans with PTSD? Disclaimer: This information is not legal advice. on Science & Technology, 111th Cong. Maybe Electric Bills or anything that shows at that point in time. That was pretty extensive throughout the base. VA compensation for disabilities arising from Camp Lejeune contamination. But I mean looking at Agent Orange the presumptive conditions that have been, you know, added to the books over all the years since Vietnam have increased. Christian: Sure. So VA began to review conditions affecting these veterans. So I think when you’re talking about, now you’re getting ready to file what do you need? Veterans disability compensation The Camp Lejeune Act of 2012 provides health care and health care funding assistance to Veterans and family water supply at Camp Lejeune, N.C. Presumptive Disability Compensation due to Contaminated Water The following eight conditions are considered presumptive for veterans (including reservists and National Guard) who were stationed at Camp Lejeune between August 1, 1953, and December 31, 1987, for a minimum of 30 days. And so for filing a claim for these conditions, I don’t think, from my understanding there’s no specific claim form for camp Lejeune only cases as there is for the healthcare. And have certain disabilities to get service connection and compensation for those disabilities. And I’m just gonna read from the list cause I don’t have this memorized. Camp Lejuene Water Contamination. It is possible. We may pay you back for your out-of-pocket health care costs that were related to any of these 15 conditions: Bladder cancer; Breast cancer; Esophageal cancer But that’s just good to know that it’s a little bit easier. And there was Vinyl Chloride. Can You Receive VA Disability Benefits for Life? And that’s a pretty complicated topic actually. From August 1, 1953, through December 31, 1987, people living at the U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, were potentially exposed to drinking water contaminated with industrial solvents, benzene, and other chemicals. For survivor’s benefits based on these conditions under the presumption and they could also file again with that, that direct theory. Provision of was it March 2017. They actually had to have been there and they had to have been dependents at the time that they were there.