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Failure to Reauthorize Zadroga Bill is Congress’ Shame (Editorial)

The Staten Island Advance has published a scathing editorial criticizing hypocritical politicians for failing to support the extension of the Zadroga Act.  With so many first responders and local residents diagnosed with life-threatening cancers that have been linked to the toxic World Trade Center dust, it is a disgrace that Congress hasn’t done the right […]

What Are My Options If My Injuries Are Not a Presumptively Covered Condition?

Presumptively covered conditions are those that have been definitely linked to 9/11. Generally, the Victims Compensation Fund (VCF) covers only injuries and diseases on this list. However, the VCF amends its list periodically. For example, the VCF amended its list to include several types of cancer in October 2012, added prostate cancer in October 2013 […]

Proving You or Your Loved One Was Present at Ground Zero or the Pentagon on 9/11

To be eligible for 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund benefits, you must prove that you were present during or immediately after the terrorist attack. If you are applying for loss of your loved one, you must prove that she or he was present and died as a result of 9/11-related injuries or disease. Proof of presence […]

What to Expect at a VCF Hearing

The VCF hearing process has been largely uncharted territory, owing in part to the fact that the Zadroga Act did not provide any detailed guidelines for adjudicating contested VCF eligibility and compensation decisions. Indeed, the first such hearings have only taken place within the last year. However, consistent with the purpose of the Act, the […]

VCF Claims on Behalf of Minor Children

Tragically, many children were victims of the World Trade Center collapse, Pentagon attack and plane crash at Shanksville. Some lost parents either during the attacks or in later years as a result of 9/11-related diseases. Others who lived or attended school in lower Manhattan sustained physical injuries or illnesses. In fact, children exposed to the […]

Proving Non-economic Losses in a VCF Claim

For most VCF claimants, non-economic losses represent the bulk of their recovery. While out of pocket costs for medical treatment — as well as lost wages from total or partial disability — can be significant, intangible losses like pain, disfigurement and the inability to fully enjoy life’s pleasures remain a major factor. Unfortunately, proving the […]

How the DOMA Supreme Court Ruling Helps Spouses of 9/11 Victims

The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) prohibited the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages. As a result, same-sex partners who were legally married in their home state were nonetheless denied federal benefits. In 2002, Kenneth R. Feinberg, the special master of the initial September 11 Victims Compensation Fund (VCF), announced that gay and lesbian domestic […]

Issues Affecting Your VCF Award

Once you receive your Victims Compensation Fund (VCF) decision letter, you should expect to receive your first payment within 30 days. The VCF is authorized to pay 10 percent of your total loss in the first installment. The VCF will send you the remainder of your payment sometime between 2016 and 2017. Prior to receiving […]

New Important Deadline Approaches for VCF Candidates

Deadlines are of critical importance for anyone who potentially has a Victims Compensation Fund claim. However, as each important deadline passes, a new one seems to appear on the horizon. This has caused many people to rush or panic unnecessarily, or worse, to erroneously believe they have lost the opportunity to pursue compensation. However, the […]

VCF Adds Deputy Special Master

Administering the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) is a significant responsibility. Despite notable progress, the Special Master and her staff have faced criticism for the pace at which claims are being processed. As of October 2013, the VCF had a staff of 75, including 11 attorneys working directly under the Special Master. The Special Master […]


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