What are VA Disability Benefits for Camp Lejeune Victims?

VA disability benefits are among the best resources for veterans who have sustained an injury during the war, or combat, or faced a traumatic injury. However, many VA benefits are not available to the families of veterans, and they are not available to civilians. Fortunately, that changed in August 2022 when President Biden signed the PACT act.

The PACT act allows civilians to file for VA disability benefits for exposure to the toxic water at Camp Lejeune. If you’re curious about how to get Camp Lejeune VA Disability benefits, read below to see if you qualify and how you can file for maximum benefits.

What is the PACT Act?

Camp Lejeune
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The PACT Act is a new Act or law that extended benefits to veterans, their families, and civilians. In particular, the PACT Act focuses on providing benefits to those injured by toxic substances, such as chemicals like Agent Orange, during foreign wars.

The PACT Act also rolled into its law the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022. The Camp Lejeune Justice Act called for the right of victims of the toxic water in Camp Lejeune to file a civil lawsuit against the government and seek benefits. The PACT Act allows civilians to also file for VA Disability, just like a veteran would if injured.

By combining VA Disability benefits and allowing civil lawsuits to be filed, the PACT Act hopes to bring justice to the many victims of the toxic water that plagued Camp Lejeune’s residents between 1953 and 1987.

Can I File For VA Disability?

You could file for VA Disability if you were exposed to the toxic water in Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987. This applies whether you are a military member or a civilian. 

To file for VA Disability, you must first meet criteria such as:

  • You were exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune for 30 consecutive days, meaning back to back, between 1953 and 1987
  • You suffered from diseases caused by contaminated water, such as cancers, neurobiological disorders, and renal toxicity.
  • You continue to suffer from the effects of this toxic water and need compensation to help you improve your quality of life.

How To File For Maximum Benefits 

If you want to file for VA disability as a service member or family member, it’s a good idea to get the help of a lawyer beforehand. Your lawyer will be able to gather evidence on your behalf to strengthen your case and represent you during your case.

Some evidence might be difficult to gather, including health records, military records, and records showing proof you were living in the area between 1953 and 1987. Your lawyer can help you file for maximum benefits to get a higher disability rating and better payouts.

If your claim is denied or you want to pursue a lawsuit, your lawyer can also help you file a lawsuit. VA disability and lawsuits can help provide you and your family with compensation and repairs for the toxic water at Camp Lejeune so many years ago.

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