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James Zadroga Story

James Zadroga — One of Many American Heroes

A legacy of bravery and service to others

When Congress proposed a bill to extend medical and compensation benefits to those involved in rescue operations and cleanup following the 9/11 attacks, it did so with people like James Zadroga in mind. While the initial attacks and rescue operations took an awful toll on New York City’s police and firefighters, thousands of Ground Zero workers began to experience severe respiratory ailments in the months and years that followed. The attorneys of Barasch & McGarry have represented many of these victims of chronic ailments stemming from toxic exposure at Ground Zero. Our goal is to help these victims and their families gain some degree of financial security in the wake of their losses.

James Zadroga’s story

In 2001, James Zadroga was a decorated New York City Police Detective who served more than 450 hours at Ground Zero during rescue and cleanup operations. Soon after, Detective Zadroga developed a chronic cough, breathing trouble, acid reflux, and frequent headaches. In 2002, James reported his injury to the NYPD, but his claim was denied.

He continued to report for duty, but within months was bedridden and reliant on an oxygen tank to breathe. Despite the continued deterioration of his health, doctors were unable to effectively diagnose or treat his condition. While he eventually did qualify for disability pension payments, the loss of income led to financial strains. In 2003, he was finally diagnosed with Black Lung Disease. He passed away in 2006 at the age of 34, leaving behind a 4-year-old daughter.

James Zadroga’s legacy

Treatment came too late for Detective James Zadroga. When he became a client of Barasch & McGarry, we advocated on his behalf and on behalf of the thousands of others like him — dedicated public servants and others who fell through the cracks following the 9/11 attacks. His story eventually led to the law that bears his name. The James L. Zadroga Health and Compensation Act of 2010 reopened the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund and provides for medical treatment and compensation for the thousands who suffered the delayed consequences of chemical exposure at Ground Zero.

Barasch & McGarry — helping set things right

As WTC lawyers, we want to help those involved in the cleanup and recovery efforts get the medical treatment they need and the compensation they deserve. We understand the requirements of the Zadroga Act and can help you gather the necessary documents to submit your claim. While we know that no amount of money could ever make up for your pain and losses, we strongly believe that everyone injured, made ill or bereaved by the catastrophe of September 11 should receive as much financial support as possible. Please contact us online or by phone at 888-351-9421 to determine eligibility for WTC compensation or to start the process of applying for James L. Zadroga Act benefits.

Compensation available to residents and office workers, teachers and students – not just responders and volunteers
Our Attorneys
  • "Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson handled everything professionally and with patience. They always had time to answer all my questions and did what they promised. Thanks esp to Brian Calamaris Lee London, and Mariya Atanasova. Thank you." - William Collins, FDNY

  • "If I could give them six stars I would...don't even bother talking to anyone else concerning 9/11. The whole team worked night and day to deliver an outstanding settlement. They are honest, hard working and extremely professional. Just make the one phone call and let them do the rest." - Les Margulis, resident in the exposure zone

  • "I had a very good experience with Michael and Mariya. They made the process stress free. I would recommend this firm to anyone seeking assistance with 9/11 related illnesses." - JE Kirwan, worked in the exposure zone

  • "The people at this firm were just great. They were concern with making sure I was taken care of in every way possible. When I was given an award Mr. Barasch didn't think it was a fair amount and appealed the decision which got me a larger award. I am very satisfied with everything they did for me in the past and are willing to do for me and my family in the future." - Bob Wiecezak, FDNY-Retired

  • "Excellent law firm. Lee London and his staff were very responsive and always followed up with phone calls or emails. This firm is a strong example of what caring and personable lawyers are all about." - Letitia Egan, wife of client, volunteer in the exposure zone

  • Deadline Extended to Register for Compensation

    There is still time to apply for significant compensation if you have been diagnosed with any of the 68 cancers that doctors at the WTC Health Program (WTCHP) have linked to the WTC toxic dust. The deadline to apply to the Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) is two years from the date that a cancer has been certified by the WTC Health Program — or any other governmental agency. The two-year period to register doesn’t start on the day of a cancer diagnosis. Rather, it starts only when a cancer survivor is made aware their cancer was linked to exposure to the WTC toxins.

    For those who died from their WTC-linked cancers, the two-year period for their family to register starts on the day of the death of the WTC victim.

    Register For Compensation

Please help spread the word about the strict two-year deadline to register a claim

Many people have tried to complete the VCF application on their own, only to learn that it requires answers to hundreds of questions and many documents to download. It would be our pleasure to help you complete the process in order to ensure that you receive the compensation that you are entitled to. Please call us for a free consultation.

Let a knowledgeable attorney help you figure it out

A cancer diagnosis can be terrifying. You undoubtedly have questions about your disease and how you will pay for treatment. Lawyers at Barasch & McGarry ensure you understand the complex requirements and help devise the best strategies for obtaining compensation and appropriate medical care under the Zadroga Act. Contact our law firm online or call 888-351-9421. The initial consultation is free, so it costs you nothing to find out whether a lawyer can help.
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