Since its establishment in 1941, Camp Lejeune has been home to thousands of civil servants and members of the US Military. However, following water contamination caused by industrial chemicals used on the base between 1953 and 1987, thousands of veterans, civil servants, and their families were potentially exposed to toxic substances. This article will explore what qualifies someone for a Camp Lejeune lawsuit, as well as how victims can go about filing for a claim.
Former Marines, civil servants, and their dependents who served at the base during the affected period can seek restitution for the damages they have incurred because of the toxic exposure. The qualifying criteria for financial and medical benefits can vary depending on the specific benefit being sought. Most VA benefits require a minimum period of active-duty service, and exceptions may apply to those with disabilities caused or worsened by their military service. For Camp Lejeune water contamination specifically, the Veterans’ Affairs office has established eligibility criteria for healthcare benefits for veterans and their family members who were exposed to the contaminants. They include:
Active Service: You must have served for a minimum of thirty cumulative days spread out between 1st August 1953, and 31st December 1987. You need to have solid evidence that you were there during this contamination. That can be as easy as showing the documents and identification necessary. Once you have those details together you can bring the case to a legal professional.
Health conditions: You must have one of the fifteen specific health conditions that have been associated with exposure to contaminated water at the camp. These conditions include several types of cancers, neurological disorders, birth defects, and other illnesses listed on the VA’s website. This is important to find certain medical records that show your specific illness. That way you can receive compensation for any kind of bills or issues that have arisen.
Presumed exposure: The VA assumes that you were exposed to the toxic water if you served there for at least thirty cumulative days during the eligible period. Additionally, if you are a dependent of a parent or a guardian who served at the camp during this time, you are also presumed to have been exposed. Your family needs to understand how dire this situation is. They might have the same health issues and it’s important to have the situation resolved promptly.
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How To Apply for A Claim
If you believe that you or a family member is eligible for VA benefits related to exposure at Camp Lejeune, then it is important to understand how to apply. Start by gathering the necessary paperwork and documents to be included along with your application. This includes evidence of military service (such as DD-214 discharge papers), proof of service at the camp during the eligible period, and medical records showing a diagnosis of one of the fifteen presumptive conditions associated with exposure. Veterans can file their Camp Lejeune claim electronically through the Department of Veteran Affairs benefits website or by completing VA Form 10-10EZ, “Application for Health Benefits.” This form can be submitted online, by mail, or in person at a VA medical facility.
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Filing a legal claim is a crucial step if you want to seek justice for any harm that resulted from the toxic exposure at the marine corps. If you served at Camp Lejeune, or if you are the dependent of a parent or guardian who did, and you believe that your health was impacted as a result, then filing for VA benefits is one way to seek compensation. Ultimately, understanding the qualifications necessary for these claims and how to file them can help victims get the financial support and medical assistance they deserve. These details can be tedious to keep up with, but they are important if you want to get the justice that you deserve.