The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease (ATSDR) estimates as many as one million people may have been exposed to contaminated water at the Camp Lejeune military base between 1953 and 1987. New legislation signed into law on 10th August 2022, named the Camp Lejeune Justice Act (CLJA), enables people harmed by the base’s toxic contaminants to claim compensation for financial damages related to:
- Past, current, and ongoing medical bills and treatment costs
- Lost wages and diminished earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Other losses caused by exposure to the contaminated water supply
The Fitch Law Firm LLC’s Marion Camp Lejeune water contamination lawsuit lawyers are here to help. They can check whether you have a claim and help you navigate the complex legal process if you qualify for relief under the CLJA.
What Does the New Act Mean for People Harmed by the Camp’s Water Supply?
The CLJA enables people harmed by the contaminants in the water at the base to file a compensation claim against the federal government, which was barred until the new Act became law. However, specific qualifying criteria apply. For example, you will need to prove your presence on the base (for at least 30 days) between 1953 and 1987 and that you developed a health condition linked with exposure to the contaminated water supply. The CLJA applies to:
- Military personnel
- Civilians and contractors who worked at Camp Lejeune
- Families who lived at the base (including in-utero exposure)
Additionally, family members of Camp Lejeune victims who have since passed may be able to file a wrongful death claim on behalf of their loved ones, irrespective of how long ago they died.
For a free legal consultation with a Marion camp lejeune water contamination lawsuit lawyer, call: (614) 545-3930Call Now »
Health Conditions Linked with Exposure to the Water Supply at Camp Lejeune
Research from the ATSDR has established a causal link between the health conditions listed below and exposure to the harmful chemicals in the water at the camp:
- Parkinson’s disease
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Multiple myeloma
- Liver cancer
- Kidney cancer
- End-stage renal disease
- Cardiac defects
- Bladder cancer
Concerns have been raised in other scientific studies evaluating health issues caused by exposure to trichloroethylene (TCE), tetrachloroethylene (PCE), vinyl chloride (VC), and benzene (the chemicals found in the water supply), noting higher occurrences of:
- Soft tissue cancer
- Severe, generalized hypersensitivity skin disorder
- Rectal cancer
- Prostate cancer
- Ovarian cancer
- Oral cleft defects
- Neurological effects
- Neurobehavioral performance deficits
- Neural tube defects
- Myelodysplastic syndromes
- Major malformations
- Lung cancer
- Low birth weight
- Liver cirrhosis
- Impaired immune system function
- Hodgkin’s disease
- Fetal death
- Eye defects
- Esophageal cancer
- Choanal atresia
- Cervical cancer
- Breast cancer
- Brain cancer
- Aplastic anemia
This list will likely grow as more research becomes available. Meanwhile, our team is on hand to answer your questions about whether a health condition not listed could qualify during a free and confidential consultation.
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How Does a Marion Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Lawsuit Lawyer Help?
There are four key areas we can help you with in your case, which are:
Checking Qualifying Criteria
The first step in making your claim is fairly straightforward. To qualify, you will need to show that you or a loved one:
- Lived or worked at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987 for more than 30 days.
- Have medical proof of an illness associated with exposure to the contaminants in the water supply.
Gathering Evidence to Prove You Qualify
To prove your eligibility, we can help you gather evidence, such as military records, employment records, medical reports, and other supporting documents to demonstrate presence at the camp and proof of a health condition.
Building a Strong and Accurate Claim
Things get more complex at this point. Initially, claims must be filed with the Navy’s legal department, the Judge Advocates General (JAG), before a civil lawsuit can be filed in court. This form must be completed in precise detail to avoid your claim being denied by the JAG if it is missing information.
Here is just one example. You will need to provide a specific dollar amount for the financial damages you are claiming, which can be a challenge – especially for non-economic damages such as pain and suffering that are subjective and difficult to quantify without experience.
According to the JAG’s instructions for completing the form, “Failure to specify a certain sum will result in an invalid presentation of your claim and may result in forfeiture of your rights.” This means you could lose the right to pursue compensation. We can help you assess the full physical, emotional, and financial impact of what you have been through so you do not leave yourself short after much suffering.
Filing a Civil Lawsuit with the Court
Once the initial administrative claim requirements are satisfied, the JAG has issued a response; claimants can file a civil lawsuit in Federal Court. Almost one million people are believed to have been exposed to the contaminants at Camp Lejeune, so a high volume of cases is anticipated. Because of this, the cases will likely be consolidated to streamline the legal process.
This is to the claimant’s benefit as strength in numbers makes the legal process more efficient in cost and time. But, again, we can help you during every stage of the process, so you always know what to expect and how your case is progressing.
How Long Do I Have to File a Camp Lejeune Lawsuit?
Individuals who want to file a Camp Lejeune injury or wrongful death lawsuit must file their case two years from 10th August 2022. As such, we would encourage you to begin your case as soon as possible to avoid missing this critical deadline and risking your right to pursue compensation.
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The Fitch Law Firm LLC has over 30 years of experience managing complex personal injury and wrongful death cases on behalf of those harmed by the negligence of others. We want to help you, too. Our attorneys’ commitment to helping people wronged by others and fighting for fair compensation drives our passion and focus for delivering high levels of client satisfaction and results.
If you have questions or would like to check if you have a valid claim, contact our team for a free and confidential consultation now.
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