Veterans impacted by Camp Lejeune contamination received more than $2 billion in 2017 from the United States Veteran’s Affairs Department (VA). A part of the money can be given to service members and close relatives who can demonstrate how these toxins impacted them. Although there is no set compensation sum, you might get up to $3,000 per month for healthcare bills.
Your specific circumstances will impact the amount of compensation you might be eligible for if you have a disability connected to Camp Lejeune. You can read this article to learn more about settlement amounts and how to get assistance navigating the benefits application process from a VA benefits lawyer.
Background of the Groundwater Pollution at Camp Lejeune
Residents of the Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) and Marine Corps Base (MCB) at New River and Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, were subjected to tainted water from 1953 to 1987. Water supplies in the area were contaminated by volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and other toxins due to fuel leakage and a nearby launderer (PBS NewsHour).
Consequently, residents of these bases, including military veterans and their family members, may have consumed carcinogenic substances while bathing, cooking, and drinking. Eventually, this occurrence led to severe illnesses like:
- Kidney cancer
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Esophageal cancer
- Breast cancer
- Lung cancer
- Hepatic steatosis
- Renal toxicity
- Myelodysplastic syndromes
- Bladder cancer
- Multiple myeloma
- Neurobehavioral effects
- Female infertility
Patients at Camp Lejeune exposed to harmful chemicals in the water may also experience other health issues, including a possible infertility problem. Several chemical compounds in the Camp Lejeune water can potentially cause serious neurological problems, such as memory loss and changes in behavior, for which the VA may also treat patients. According to many estimates, Camp Lejeune’s contamination is to blame for millions of cancer cases.
Who Is Eligible for Disability Benefits for Camp Lejeune Groundwater Pollution?
Members of the Reserve, National Guard, and Active Duty are eligible for compensation. Additionally, there are three primary requirements to be eligible for benefits:
- You spent a minimum of 30 days at the base from August 1953 to December 1987.
- One or more of the 15 illnesses that qualify as being caused by contaminated water were diagnosed as part of your illness.
- You were not given a dishonorable discharge when you left the American military.
Along with other proof, you’ll also need to present medical documents of your ailment.
Families of veterans who resided at the base or MCAS may also be eligible for compensation. They will have to provide proof of their relationship with a veteran. They must present official documents like a marriage certificate, date of birth, or adoption papers.
How Much Money Would I Get if Camp Lejeune Pollution Caused My Disability?
You might be able to request a greater compensation amount depending on your level of disability. For instance, individuals with a 100% disability claim may be eligible for benefits of up to $3,000 per month.
What Can I Do to Get Rewarded?
You can apply for reimbursement for medical expenses by:
- Applying on VA.gov or enlisting the assistance of a knowledgeable advisor, like a VA benefits attorney
- Notifying VA that you’re requesting benefits for a condition related to Camp Lejeune
- Present proof of your illness’s medical files, such as a test result or physician’s report presenting proof that you served at the Military station.
You could be eligible for health coverage under the CCLFA if you resided or served on the outpost during the eligible periods and experienced any serious health issue (including diseases not mentioned above), provided you can demonstrate with recent findings that your diagnosis and problems are most likely due to harmful exposure to Camp Lejeune water.
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