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Is There Anything I Should Do If I Was Downtown After 9/11 But I Am Not Sick?

As a first responder, you are able to access monitoring from the WTC Health Program whether or not you are sick. Going to your yearly monitoring visits, even if you’re healthy now, is helpful from a research perspective and is also a great way to make sure that you get certified immediately should you develop any 9/11-related conditions. And, the doctors at the Health Program see and treat more 9/11 illnesses than private doctors. Thus, they are more likely to catch and relate symptoms to a 9/11 illness.

As a survivor, a.k.a. somebody who lived, worked, or went to school downtown on or after 9/11, you must be symptomatic to participate in the WTC Health Program and the VCF. That means that if you are not sick with any 9/11-related conditions, you likely won’t qualify for services yet. There are a few things you should still do to protect yourself for the future, however.

First and foremost, people who are not sick may still register for the VCF. We encourage anybody who was in the area, whether or not they are sick, to do this. It’s quick and easy to do on the VCF website at www.vcf.gov, but feel free to as us to register you. Registration protects you in case you ever get sick in the future.

It’s also worth thinking about getting your proof of presence documents ahead of time. For most people, finding proof of presence gets more difficult as time passes. Look into the documentation requirements for both the WTC Health Program and VCF and make sure you have acceptable documents ready and/or affidavits from an acceptable number of witnesses proving your presence downtown. If you don’t have this evidence yet, now is a good time to start obtaining those required documents.

Survivors should also keep in mind that in order to qualify for the WTC Health Program you do not need to be sick with a physical condition. Mental health conditions like PTSD, anxiety, or depression, though they are not compensable through the VCF, will qualify you for the WTC Health Program at which point you will have access to yearly monitoring visits and quick certification for any conditions you later develop.

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  • "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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