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Proving Your Presence in the 9/11 Exposure Zone


  • Proving your presence establishes you were in a specific geographic area, called the 9/11 Exposure Zone, during a specified time period.
  • The Exposure Zones for the Victim Compensation Fund and WTC Health Program overlap but encompass different portions of Lower Manhattan.
  • Claimants are required to provide documentary evidence of their presence as part of their claim for compensation and medical benefits.
  • Barasch & McGarry helps claimants gather and provide evidence of their presence in the 9/11 Exposure Zone and has recovered over $3 billion from the VCF.

Verifying You Were In the 9/11 Exposure Zone

The Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) and World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP) both require proof of a victim’s presence during a specific period of time in order to start the process of assessing compensation and medical benefits.

  • Presence in the Exposure Zone – Establishing that you were in the geographic area of the World Trade Center attacks, known as the 9/11 Exposure Zone, is the first requirement. This area of Lower Manhattan in New York extends south from Canal Street for the VCF or south of Houston Street for the WTCHP.
  • On 9/11 or in the 8 months that followed – Responders or survivors of the 9/11 attacks who spent time in the Exposure Zone on September 11, 2001 or in the 8 months that followed, up until May 30, 2002.
Map of the 9/11 Exposure Zone in Lower Manhattan NYC

Providing Proof of Presence Documentation

As part of demonstrating that you are eligible for compensation through the Victim Compensation Fund, you must show that you worked in recovery and cleanup operations, or lived or worked near one of the crash sites, along the route by which WTC debris was transported to the landfill, or near the Fresh Kills landfill at any time between the dates shown above.

Typical documents that may help you prove presence include:

  • Employer records showing employment with an organization that helped with rescue and recovery, cleanup, or debris removal and transportation, and records confirming that you were in fact present at the site — pay stubs, WTC site credentials or ID, an official personnel roster or schedule, any records showing that you volunteered at the site, etc.
  • Documents that show residence in the exposure zone, such as rent or mortgage receipts, utility bills, lease agreements, insurance policies, tax returns, etc. In addition to these records, you must also provide at least two documents showing that you were actually present at the site, such as affidavits from neighbors, landlords or other community residents.
  • Other contemporaneous documentation of your presence at the site, such as medical records, work orders, confirmation of tasks performed — these documents can include records like a paid invoice for cleaning and restoring an apartment in the affected area, a building pass, receipts for purchases made in the area or even documents such as parking tickets.
  • School or day care records confirming enrollment or attendance during the eligibility period.
  • Sworn and notarized affidavits from people who can attest to your presence at a 9/11 crash site.

Let Experienced VCF Lawyers Do The Work For You

At Barasch & McGarry, our dedicated 9/11 attorneys have successfully represented thousands of 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund claimants. We know what documents the Victim Compensation Fund will accept as proof of presence and what documents require additional affidavit support.

As an attorney in practice for 40 years I have met many personal injury attorneys. I refer matters only to Barasch & McGarry because of their expertise and personal commitment to clients. The firm treats its clients as valued friends and takes a personal interest in their clients.

Lawyer & 9/11 Survivor

We can help you obtain proof of your presence, witness affidavits, and credible medical evidence of 9/11-linked conditions you suffer from. Let us help you through the process, ensuring that you get it right the first time and are not subjected to unnecessary delays in receiving the full and fair compensation you deserve.

Contact Us

It’s important to act quickly. We can help determine your eligibility for the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund and other programs. Call 212-385-8000 or contact us online today.

Proving Your Presence in the 9/11 Exposure Zone

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