As a TORT lawyer who has handled many injury cases, the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 provides a grand avenue for me to serve as your legal representative and help you file a compensation claim.
This law gives you the right to seek financial compensation from the government for every harm done to you because of your exposure to the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune.
Once evidence is provided, the professional team at Schmidt & Clark will help you file a lawsuit and get the justice you deserve.
Table Of Contents
- Quick Summary
- What Is the Camp Lejeune Justice Act?
- The History Behind the Camp Lejeune Justice Act
- Injuries Caused by Camp Lejeune Water Contamination
- Burden of Proof
- Beneficiaries of the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022
- What the Camp Lejeune Justice Act Means for Camp Lejeune Victims
- How to File a Camp Lejeune Lawsuit
- How Long Does It Take To File a Camp Lejeune Lawsuit?
- The Average Settlement for a Camp Lejeune Claim
- President Joe Biden signed the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 into law to provide healthcare benefits to individuals suffering from illnesses because of exposure to Camp Lejeune-contaminated water.
- You have to provide factual evidence that shows Camp Lejeune’s toxic water affected you to be eligible to file a legal compensation claim.
- Affected individuals have up to two years from the date of their diagnosis to file a Camp Lejeune lawsuit for damage settlement.
What Is the Camp Lejeune Justice Act?
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 is a bill that was passed into law on August 10, 2022, by President Joe Biden to cater to Camp Lejeune residents who contracted several illnesses because of their exposure to contaminated water.
Affected individuals and their families can seek financial compensation for any illness suffered if they satisfy the conditions laid down by the Camp Lejeune Justice Act.
The History Behind the Camp Lejeune Justice Act
The Camp Lejeune water contamination event dates back to the 1950s when the water wells at Camp Lejeune got polluted with toxic chemicals, making them unsafe for usage.
Unfortunately, Camp Lejeune residents were unaware that the water had been contaminated, got exposed to it, and contracted various diseases in the process.
These victims went on to live with several diseases, and despite their complaints that illnesses were linked to the Camp Lejeune base, the government denied it.
The US federal government didn’t start to take the situation seriously until one of the victims, Laura Jones, filed a lawsuit in 2010, and others followed. This led to President Obama signing the Camp Lejeune Families Act into law in 2012.
This act, at first, was intended to provide healthcare to the affected victims, but it wasn’t very effective.
Years passed, and due to constant pressure from victims and their lawyers, the topic was brought up again in 2022, which led to much deliberation in the House of Representatives about the loopholes in healthcare and other benefits.
President Biden signed the Camp Lejeune Justice Act in August 2022 to close these loopholes and enable victims to file a compensation claim for damages .
Related Article: Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Lawsuit
Injuries Caused by Camp Lejeune Water Contamination
Victims who were exposed to the toxic water at Camp Lejeune contracted various injuries and life-threatening illnesses, some of which include:
- Adult leukemia
- Aplastic anemia
- Bladder cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Liver cancer
- Multiple myeloma
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Parkinson’s disease
Studies have also shown that these injuries are linked to the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune because of harmful substances such as benzene, TCE, and others .
See all related toxic tort claims our lawyers have taken on.
Burden of Proof
You might be qualified to file a claim for compensation under the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 if you became ill from exposure to the toxic water at Camp Lejeune.
You must provide verifiable evidence that the toxic chemicals in the Camp Lejeune water caused your illness.
This evidence includes:
Military Service Record
Your military service record, otherwise known as your DD214, has to show that you served at the Camp Lejeune base when the water contamination incident occurred.
It also has to include the following key information:
- Date and place of your enlistment
- Duty stations and dates
- Medals, decorations, and campaign awards
- Qualifications, performance, and training
- Administrative remarks
- Disciplinary actions
- Military education
- Total creditable service
- Last duty station and rank
- Date of separation from the military
- Type of separation (honorable or dishonorable)
- Reason for separation
Your housing record has to show you and your family lived within the area of Camp Lejeune during the incident.
Other important documents, such as bills, and activities, such as school enrollment (if you have children), can be very beneficial too.
Your medical record has to stand as solid scientific and medical evidence that you contracted an illness because of your exposure to Camp Lejeune water.
For this reason, your medical record must include the detected symptoms of your illness, test and imaging results, a diagnosis, approved medications, treatments, and surgical procedures.
This information will help your lawyer prove in court that you are well within your rights to file a compensation claim and get the appropriate relief you deserve.
Beneficiaries of the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 states that its beneficiaries are individuals, service members, or veterans who lived and worked at the Camp Lejeune base and were exposed to the contaminated water for at least 30 days within the period from August 1, 1953, to December 31, 1987.
You can then file a legal claim for compensation if exposure to the water caused your disease, was associated with exposure to the water, or exposure to the water increased your chances of having the illness.
What the Camp Lejeune Justice Act Means for Camp Lejeune Victims
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act means a lot for victims, as it has provided them with great benefits for the first time, despite decades of struggle.
These individuals can now file for compensation and be rewarded with substantial amounts that would alleviate the physical effects and the emotional and psychological trauma they had to endure.
At the moment, affected individuals are still submitting lawsuits seeking compensation, and while some individuals have received compensation, others can expect to receive theirs soon too.
How to File a Camp Lejeune Lawsuit
Various law firms use different methods to help you file a Camp Lejeune lawsuit.
Nonetheless, the standard procedure for filing a Camp Lejeune lawsuit is shown below:
- Step 1: Provide evidence that shows that you were at Camp Lejeune at the time of the incident.
- Step 2: Provide medical documentation that clearly states the nature of your illness, symptoms, diagnosis, etc.
- Step 3: File a disability claim with Veterans Affairs. You can do this via their website or at their regional office.
- Step 4: Wait for feedback from Veterans Affairs. This usually takes around 126 days.
- Step 5: Get yourself an attorney. Do this if you were denied VA compensation, and be sure that the attorney is well-experienced.
- Step 6: File your administrative claim. Your lawyer will help you with this, given the information you have provided at a United States District Court.
How Long Does It Take To File a Camp Lejeune Lawsuit?
It takes anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to file a Camp Lejeune lawsuit. The time taken depends on how fast you have the right documentation ready and the pace of your attorney.
Also, according to the Camp Lejeune Act, you have up to two years from the date of your diagnosis to file a Camp Lejeune lawsuit.
The Average Settlement for a Camp Lejeune Claim
The average settlement for a Camp Lejeune claim could be anywhere from $25000 to as much as $1 million. All of this depends on the severity of the illness you are suffering from.
For example, you will most likely get a settlement from $500,000 to $1 million or even more if you have severe cancer.
“I would advise people to proceed now, to not wait, because the system is going to be filled with claims. Find a good attorney to help you.”
– Daniel Wasserberg, New York City Attorney
The amount of money Camp Lejeune victims are getting varies depending on their health conditions.
If you are suffering from a mild condition, your compensation won’t be as high as that of someone suffering from a much more serious condition, such as cancer.
Who Qualifies for the Camp Lejeune Lawsuit?
To qualify for a Camp Lejeune lawsuit, you must have lived and worked there for at least 30 days during the incident and contracted an illness due to exposure to contaminated water.
Is the Camp Lejeune Justice Act Part of the Pact Act?
Yes, the Camp Lejeune Justice Act is part of the Pact Act. President Joe Biden signed this bill into law on August 20, 2022, to allow affected veterans and service members to obtain healthcare benefits and legal compensation for damages.
If you or any of your family members are suffering from an illness due to exposure to contaminated water, contact us at Schmidt & Clark, LLP via (866) 588-0600, and our experienced lawyers will help you get the justice that you deserve.
We will walk you through your options so that you know the next line of action to take.
You will also get a free case evaluation from us and other legal advice that will increase your chances of getting compensated for your condition.