If you were affected by the Camp Lejeune water contamination, you may wonder how you can file a claim. This process can seem daunting, but with the help of a qualified attorney, it is much easier.
Steps for Filing a Claim
You may have been exposed to contaminated water if you served at Camp Lejeune or lived there with a family member between 1953 and 1987. The U.S. government confirmed that the water at Camp Lejeune was contaminated and created a program to compensate those affected. If you served at Camp Lejeune during the specified period and have been diagnosed with one of the covered illnesses, you may qualify for disability benefits and free health care.
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has a helpful guide outlining what records you need to provide. Here are the steps you can take to file a claim for Camp Lejeune water contamination:
1. Prove You Were a Victim
To file a claim, you must prove that you were stationed at Camp Lejeune between August 1953 and December 1987 when the water was contaminated. In addition, you can apply if you are the surviving spouse or child of a service member stationed at Camp Lejeune during this period. If you do not have a copy of your discharge papers, you can request one from the National Archives and Records Administration.
2. Collect Your Medical Records
You’ll also need to provide medical documents of any conditions you believe are connected to your time at Camp Lejeune. These can include medical records, prescriptions, and doctor’s notes.
3. File a VA Disability Claim
File a VA disability claim online, by mail, or in person at your local VA office. Be sure to include all relevant medical records and documentation with your claim. Once your claim is received, a VA representative will contact you to discuss your eligibility for benefits.
4. Wait for VA to Process the Claim
It can take a few weeks or even months for the VA to review and process your claim, depending on its complexity. In the meantime, you can check the status of your claim online or by calling the VA. Once your claim is approved, you will receive a letter detailing your benefits.
How an Attorney Can Help With Your VA Disability Claim
If you or a loved one served at Camp Lejeune and has been diagnosed with cancer or another illness, you may qualify for VA benefits. An attorney can help you file a claim for these benefits, as well as an appeal if your claim is denied. Here are some ways an attorney can help you with your VA disability claim:
Guidance on How to Obtain Compensation
The VA released information to guide you on filing a claim for disability benefits if you were exposed to contaminated water while serving at Camp Lejeune, but the process can still be complicated.
An attorney can help guide you in obtaining a compensation award for your injuries to ensure that you receive the maximum amount of compensation you’re entitled to.
Help Gather Proof of Medical Issues
A lawyer can work at the forefront of your case and help you request and compile all of your medical records from the time you were stationed at Camp Lejeune. They can also speak with your family and friends to better understand your health history during that time; this may include asking your spouse and those close to you if they remember you complaining of certain symptoms.
Help File the Lawsuit
If you decide to file a lawsuit, you will need to prove that the water contamination at Camp Lejeune caused your illness. This can be difficult, but your attorney will help you gather the needed evidence.
If your claim is denied, a Camp Lejeune toxic water contamination attorney can help you file an appeal. This lawyer can also help if your claim is accepted, but the benefits you were awarded are insufficient.
Camp Geiger is part of the Camp Lejeune complex–even though they didn’t have the same contaminated water exposure, it is reasonable to wonder if Camp Geiger was part of Camp Lejeune water contamination. If you served at Camp Geiger, you may be eligible for benefits through the Camp Lejeune water contamination claim process.
Filing a claim for compensation from the government can be a complicated and frustrating process, but receiving the money and benefits you deserve is possible. If you or a loved one were stationed at Camp Lejeune and have been diagnosed with cancer or another illness, don’t hesitate to contact a lawyer at Strom Law who can help you file a claim.
The government set aside billions of dollars to compensate victims of the water contamination, and you may be entitled to a portion of that money. With the help of a qualified attorney, such as those at Strom Law, you can get the compensation you deserve and hold the government accountable for its negligence.