Non-Cancer VCF Payouts
The terrorist events of September 11, 2001, left thousands of victims injured or killed by the hijacked airplanes used to attack the World Trade Center, Pentagon, and other U.S. targets. That tragic day nearly 3,000 people perished as the planes crashed, and WTC buildings collapsed. No one will ever forget the horror, pain, and suffering we watched unfold that day.
Sadly, almost 20 years later, the pain and suffering continue for thousands of individuals who were exposed to the toxic dust and other contaminants on that day and in its aftermath.
To date, the World Trade Center attorneys at the NYC-based Jacob Fuchsberg Law Firm have helped hundreds of 9/11 survivors and their families receive compensation from the VCF to help ease the burdens they carry every day.
Our compassionate lawyers are very experienced and knowledgeable about the VCF claim process and can help you, or your loved one, receive compensation. We know no amount of money can replace your health or the loss of a loved one, but hopefully, it can help ease any financial burdens you carry because of these losses.
Please call our New York law firm at 212-869-3500 for a no-obligation free consultation. We are here to support you through this very emotional process and will do everything we can to ensure you receive justice.
September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Zadroga Act
In 2001, a fund was established and put into place by the U.S. government to support the 9/11 victims and their families. Approximately three years later, this fund was exhausted. The fund sat dormant until 2010 when Congress passed the “James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010” (Zadroga Act) and set it to operate for five years. In 2015, an extension was reauthorized with additional funding for another five years.
By 2019 the fund was close to depletion, and Congress passed a new law, which will essentially make the fund permanent since it doesn’t expire until Oct. 1, 2090. The law, titled “Never Forget the Heroes, James Zadroga, Ray Pfeifer, and Luis Alvarez Permanent Authorization of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Act.” This means anyone who is registered and becomes sick can make a claim until 2090, as Congress will continue to authorize more funds to be added until that date.
How Does the Victim Compensation Fund Program Eligibility Work?
The VCF award program is run by the U.S. Department of Justice, which is headed by Special Master Rupa Bhattacharyya. This department is tasked with determining VCF eligibility. The eligibility criteria are specific, and anyone applying for a VCF claim will need to have met these requirements and submit documentation to prove their circumstances.
In order to qualify, the Jacob Fuchsberg Victim Compensation Fund Attorneys will first register you with the World Trade Center Health Program to obtain a causation certification. Registering protects a person’s right to make a VCF claim in the event they become ill and need assistance.
It is a separate filing process that is not obligatory in any way, but it is required for any victim who wants to make a claim now or in the future. Essentially, it alerts the VCF you may be a potential claimant and that you meet the legal requirements associated with the filing.
Once registered, victims are eligible to file a claim at any time, but are not obligated to do so. The amount of an award is based on several complex models that determine sickness, level of exposure, time of exposure, and economic and non-economic losses. Victims will see different award amounts depending upon their situation. The experienced lawyers at the Jacob Fuchsberg Law Firm are highly familiar with the complex calculations performed by the VCF and will work hard to maximize the economic and non-economic loss awards for all of our clients.
What are Non-Cancer VCF Conditions?
The administrators of the WTC Victim’s Compensation Fund lists hundreds of types of illnesses that qualify for compensation awards. The list is extensive and is divided into cancerous and non-cancerous illnesses. If you, or a loved one, suffer from a non-cancerous 9/11-related illness, you may be eligible to file a Victim’s Compensation Fund claim. Our lawyers can file your claim and make sure all pertinent information is included – missing just one step, or piece of information can result in an award denial.
What Types of Non-Cancer Conditions Does the VCF Cover?
Many 9/11 survivors continue to struggle with illnesses and injuries as a result of the terrorist attack or the exposure they were subjected to in its aftermath. Non-cancerous conditions the VCF covers include:
- Acute traumatic injury. This category encompasses burns, complex sprains, eye injuries, fractures, head trauma, tendon tears, and other traumatic injuries.
- Aerodigestive disorders. Illnesses in this classification include asthma, chronic cough syndrome, chronic laryngitis, chronic nasopharyngitis, a chronic respiratory disorder due to fumes/vapors, chronic rhinosinusitis, gastroesophageal reflux disorder (GERD), interstitial lung diseases, reactive airways dysfunction syndrome (RADS), sleep apnea exacerbated by or related to another condition in the list of aerodigestive disorders, upper airway hyperreactivity, COPD (exacerbated on or after 9/11 and new COPD onsets).
- Mental health conditions. Covered mental health conditions include acute stress disorder, adjustment disorder, anxiety disorder (not otherwise specified), depression (not otherwise specified), dysthymic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, major depressive disorder, panic disorder, PTSD, and substance abuse.
- Musculoskeletal disorders. At this time, only WTC responders are eligible to become certified for musculoskeletal disorders. Injuries in this classification include low back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and other musculoskeletal conditions. Initial medical care must have been received by September 11, 2003, to qualify.
This list covers most of the non-cancerous illnesses people have suffered due to the events of 9/11, and it is routinely updated as additional types of WTC-related illnesses surface. Unfortunately, some victims may suffer more than one illness, including cancer. Currently, more than 75 types of cancer are WTF VCF eligible.
World Trade Center Health Program
The World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP) is a program for people diagnosed with 9/11 related illnesses, both cancer and non-cancerous. Eligible persons must have been present at Ground Zero or any areas south of Canal Street on 9/11 or in the ensuing months. To qualify for the WTC health program, victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks must fall into one of four categories:
- NYC first responders, including members of the New York City Fire Department (FDNY), including firefighters and emergency medical responders, performed rescue and recovery for a minimum of one day.
- New York City emergency responders, including NYPD, PAPD, Port Authority employees, cleanup workers, and anyone else who helped perform rescue, recovery, cleanup, and debris removal at disaster areas or other designated locations.
- Survivors of the terrorist attacks in New York City, including residents, workers, students, daycare attendees, day program attendees, or other persons who were otherwise present in the affected areas on or after 9/11.
- Individuals who were present for rescue, recovery, and cleanup at the Pentagon in Arlington or the Shanksville PA crash site on or after 9/11.
As a part of filing to receive a claim from the VCF, 9/11, our skilled attorneys will help you obtain a Certificate of Causation from the WTC Health Program. This certificate will enable you to receive free treatment for your illness under certain circumstances.
Getting You Registered for the World Trade Center Health Program
Applying to the WTCHP to be certified is a separate process from the VCF. Our attorneys can help you fill out all relevant applications to ensure you do not miss any steps or inadvertently leave out pertinent documentation, which can result in the WTCHP administrators issuing a denial. As our client, we want to make sure everything is in order to enable you to get approved faster by the WTCHP and become eligible to file a VCF claim.
Enrolling You in the Victim Compensation Fund
To file a successful VCF claim, there are three primary steps September 11 victims need to take. Our World Trade Center attorneys can help you with this process; you don’t have to do it on your own. We will work to make the process stress-free for you. The steps we’ll take include:
- Help you prove you were in the exposure zone or lower Manhattan on 9/11 or the following months. Documents that can be used to verify your eligibility include business records, photographs, leases, contracts, and other types of documents – we’ll meticulously look at any paperwork you have connecting you to the exposure zone and determine which documents will provide us to make the strongest case for you.
- Ensure you have the correct documentation to show you have a health condition related to 9/11. The CDC maintains an extensive list of eligible illnesses, and new ones are added on a regular basis. We will check to see if your medical records align with their criteria and work to get the proper verification submitted through the right channels.
- File a claim for you once we’ve consulted with you and gathered everything you need to file a claim. Once it’s filed, we will aggressively monitor your case for you through its completion. We will keep you up to date with any developments.
After we complete your claim and file it, your case will need to be evaluated by the Special Master’s office. Once they review your case, they will apply their calculations to determine the award you are eligible to receive. Our attorneys will establish and build your case, much like any other personal injury situation, and will do everything we can to ensure you receive fair compensation to help you and your family.
Start Your WTC Victim Compensation Payout Claim with a Free Consultation
The lawyers at the Jacob Fuchsberg Law firm understand the difficulties you’ve faced, and we promise to stand with you and help you receive the best VCF payout possible. Our Manhattan-based legal team is highly experienced with both the WTC Victim Compensation Fund and the World Trade Center Health Program filing processes.
Even if you think you do not qualify for a VCF non-cancer or cancer award or have previously been denied, it is a good idea to receive a legal consultation anyway. Our WTC attorneys are interested in your story, and they may see something in your experience that would make you eligible.
The skilled WTC attorneys at our law firm are compassionate, tactful, and fully understanding of the challenges and stresses 9/11 victims face on a daily basis, along with the fear of not knowing what will happen with an illness or with financial worries. Over the past 20 years, we’ve successfully handled hundreds of WTC cases, and our clients have received victim compensation payouts. We will work hard to give you a similar outcome.
When we consult with our clients, we listen and hear their stories. Once we have all the necessary documentation, we will file a claim for our clients that gets them the recovery they deserve.
Please call the Jacob Fuchsberg Law Firm today at 212-869-3500 or fill out our contact form. We are happy to provide you with a free consultation, to answer questions, offer legal advice, or provide general information.
All of our legal fees are without fee or cost to you unless and until a recovery is obtained.