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Firefighter-Turned-Advocate Fights for 9/11 Community

In the years since 9/11, the attorneys at Barasch & McGarry have been privileged to represent thousands of first responders, survivors, and families whose lives were forever altered on that day. Fighting for health care and compensation for the 9/11 community has become our mission. But we are not doing it alone. Our team is composed of claims administrators, supervisors, managers and, since 2016, former firefighter and first responder Richard Alles, who serves as our Director of 9/11 Community Affairs.

Twenty minutes after the North Tower collapsed, Richard Alles was there, leading a search-and-rescue mission, trying to find people to save. As we know now, there were precious few rescues at the site that day. “I fully expected that we were going to find and assist hundreds and hundreds of survivors in the wreckage,” Richard said in an interview on the 19th anniversary of the attacks. “And it turned out shortly, days after that, I began to understand that we weren’t really going to find anybody. And we didn’t.”

When Richard retired from the New York City Fire Department after 38 years, he knew he could leave firefighting behind but he could never leave behind the people who now are suffering with cancer, respiratory diseases, heart disease, and other illnesses that are tied to toxic dust and debris inhaled at Ground Zero.

As Director of 9/11 Community Affairs at Barasch & McGarry, Richard works tirelessly to inform the 9/11 community of the compensation programs that are available to help pay for health care and medical bills for those afflicted by 9/11-related illnesses. The World Trade Center Health Program and the September 11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) provide survivors and first responders with free health care and financial compensation for those whose illnesses are linked to 9/11. To take advantage of these programs, you don’t need to file a lawsuit. You just need to file a claim and prove that you were in Lower Manhattan on 9/11 or during the following 8 months.

Richard and the entire Barasch & McGarry team can help you with your claim. To get started, all you have to do is call our New York office at 888-351-9421 or contact us online. Our lawyers and staff are ready to explain the benefits available and get you enrolled in the programs so you no longer face such a heavy financial burden.

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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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