WTC Illness Coverage Eligibility
Will the new 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund cover my injury or illness?
Once you have shown that you were present at the crash sites — as defined by the Federal Regulations governing claims under the Zadroga Act — during the period beginning with the attack and ending on May 30, 2002, you must show that you suffered an injury or illness covered by the 2010 James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act.
Covered WTC-related responder, resident and worker illnesses
The James Zadroga Bill provides for compensation from the September 11 Fund for anyone who meets its presence and time period requirements. It does not distinguish among those who worked in rescue, recovery or cleanup and those who lived or worked in the immediate vicinity. But it does not cover every illness or injury resulting from the 9/11 attacks. Covered illnesses include:
- Interstitial lung diseases
- Chronic Respiratory Disorder
- Reactive Airways Dysfunction Syndrome (RADS)
- WTC-exacerbated Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
- Chronic Cough Syndrome
- Upper airway hyperreactivity
- Chronic rhinosinusitis
- Chronic nasopharyngitis
- Chronic laryngitis
- Gastroesophageal Reflux Disorder (GERD)
- Sleep apnea exacerbated by or related to the above conditions
- Low back pain
- Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS)
- Certain other musculoskeletal disorders caused by repetitive stress on the joints or skeleton during the covered period
- Traumatic injuries, such as broken bones, head injuries and other blunt traumas
As of June 2012, the Zadroga Act also covers 68 specific types of WTC-related cancers, including lung, breast, colon, trachea, esophageal, kidney, bladder, skin, thyroid, blood and ovarian cancers, as well as childhood cancers.
Common WTC-related illnesses not covered by the Zadroga law
To qualify for WTC settlement payments, the Act requires claimants to have suffered “physical harm or death as a result” of the September 11 crashes. Although many responders, residents and workers have struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety or depression disorder, or substance abuse because of the disaster, people whose mental and emotional difficulties do not also cause or accompany some type of physical illness or injury do not qualify for compensation.
In cases of physical illness or injury not explicitly mentioned by the Zadroga law, the Special Master — the woman in charge of administering the Victim Compensation Fund — can make a case-by-case determination as to whether the Fund covers the injury.
Applying for compensation under the Zadroga Act
If you suffered an illness or injury resulting from your presence near the site of one of the 9/11 crashes and did not apply for WTC victims’ compensation before the original Fund closed in June 2004, you may qualify for compensation and other benefits under the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010. We invite you to learn more about your rights by reading through these pages, and then contact us with any remaining questions or concerns.
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.
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.
Barasch & McGarry — helping set things right
The seasoned personal injury attorneys at Barasch & McGarry have helped eligible claimants get the best possible WTC settlement from the Victim Compensation Fund since Congress established the first Fund in 2001. We know the application process from the ground up — one of our partners, Michael Barasch, helped set up the claims process, consulting repeatedly with the Special Master of the Victim Compensation Fund.
We have collected more money from the Victim Compensation Fund for our injured clients than any other law firm. And while no amount of money could make up for your pain and losses, we strongly believe that everyone injured or made ill 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 your eligibility for WTC compensation or to start the process of applying for James Zadroga Act benefits.