For decades, Camp Lejeune water contamination has been a huge issue. Despite the fact that the toxic water supply at the North Carolina Marine Corps base has caused devastating health effects for marines and their families, no action was taken until very recently. Earlier this month, Congress passed the historic Camp Lejeune Justice Act. (President Biden officially signed the bill into law on August 10, 2022.) This is an incredibly important development for many people, but unfortunately the delayed response has left many incredibly ill and in need of expensive health care and treatment.
The team at Buttafuoco & Associates has been watching legal developments in Camp Lejeune water contamination cases, and has begun fighting for the rights of victims and their families. If you or your family member is suffering health problems that you believe are related to the contaminated water on the base, our New York Camp Lejeune toxic water lawyers can help you navigate your legal rights. Read on to learn how to know whether you have a case.
Camp Lejeune Water Contamination History
Camp Lejeune, located in Jackson, North Carolina, is the nation’s largest marine base. From the 1950s to the 1980s, marines and their families living on the base drank, bathed in, and cooked with highly toxic water without having any knowledge of the contamination at Camp Lejeune.
In 1981, a surveillance report and independent tests warned of dangerous levels of chlorinated hydrocarbons in the drinking water, more than 200 times the amount of toxic chemicals considered safe, but the Navy did nothing to rectify the situation. It was not until 1987 that they stopped using the contaminated water wells, but by this point the damage had already been done. According the U.S. Department of Veterans’ Affairs, lasting health conditions found in veterans stationed at Camp Lejeune include:
- Adult leukemia
- Aplastic anemia and other myelodysplastic syndromes
- Bladder cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Liver cancer
- Multiple myeloma
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Parkinson’s disease
Furthermore, children of service members have suffered lifelong illnesses and even death. If you or a family member worked at Camp Lejeune and have become ill after exposure to toxic chemicals at the base, it is in your best interest to act quickly and contact a New York Camp Lejeune toxic water attorney at Buttafuoco & Associates. We can review your case for free, and help you determine whether you are entitled to medical care and financial compensation from the VA or through the Camp Lejeune Justice Act.
What is the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022?
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act is part of a larger legislative package called the PACT Act. The bulk of the legislation provides healthcare and financial compensation to people affected by another serious toxic chemicals issue on bases: toxic burn pits used in Iraq and Afghanistan to dispose of chemicals, plastics, human waste, and other toxic substances. For years, disability claims involving exposure to these substances were rejected by the VA, despite the fact that many service people and their family members were exposed, and many still have lasting health effects.
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act is a smaller provision within the bill that gives legal recourse to those affected by the water at Camp Lejeune. The bill specifies that if you worked at Camp Lejeune and were exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune for at least 30 days between August 1, 1953, and December 31, 1987, you can file a claim and recover damages via a Camp Lejeune lawsuit.
While the initial VA provisions covered veterans, family members exposed to toxic water on the base, including in utero, were previously offered little legal recourse. While the details of the bill certainly empower affected veterans and their families, the best way to understand your rights is to contact a Camp Lejeune toxic water attorney in New York.
Should I File a Camp Lejeune Lawsuit?
In many cases, veterans and their families who worked at Camp Lejeune and fell ill after contact with toxic water on the base may be eligible to file a Lejeune water contamination lawsuit. The problem with these cases is that they can sometimes move slowly, which makes it difficult for veterans and their families to receive compensation when they truly need it. Because of the time investment, individual cases can also be incredibly exhausting.
Buttafuoco & Associates has handled numerous mass tort cases, which is one option for moving forward in this situation. A mass tort is a kind of personal injury case that involves numerous plaintiffs, often against a large organization and heard in a single court. A mass tort is similar to a class action settlement, as it allows many plaintiffs to sue an organization for damages. The most important difference, however, is that a mass tort tends to carry significantly higher settlement amounts for those who have suffered severe injuries, such as those caused by contamination at Camp Lejeune. Mass torts also benefit from the number of plaintiffs and the amount of evidence, and tend to be resolved much more quickly than individual cases.
We are actively fighting for the rights of victims and their family members to ensure that the responsible are held accountable for the unforgivable negligence they have demonstrated. If you have a Lejeune water contamination lawsuit, we will fight for your rights and help you recover the maximum amount of compensation you are eligible for.
To find out whether a Camp Lejeune toxic water lawyer serving New York could benefit your case, get in touch with us today.