In the few months since the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 was signed into law, the number of claims brought against the U.S. government over exposure to toxic chemicals in the water at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune has jumped into the thousands. And that number is expected to continue to grow over the next two years. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with cancer, birth defects, Parkinson’s disease, or another adverse health outcome that may have been caused by Camp Lejeune’s contaminated water supply, do not hesitate to speak to a Camp Lejeune water contamination attorney about your legal options. The deadline to file a claim against the government is getting closer every day, and you don’t want to miss your chance to recover the compensation you deserve for your injuries.
Upon signing into law the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 on August 10, 2022, President Joe Biden created a two-year window during which affected individuals could pursue settlements for injuries caused by exposure to the contaminated water supply at Camp Lejeune, even if they were previously denied benefits. Over the past several months, the U.S. Navy has received notice of thousands of claims that will be pursued by U.S. Marine veterans and family members who lived on the base between August 1, 1953, and December 31, 1987, and subsequently suffered injuries caused by exposure to toxic chemicals like benzene, vinyl chloride (VC), trichloroethylene (TCE), tetrachloroethylene, and perchloroethylene (PCE) in the drinking water.
Pursuant to the new Camp Lejeune Justice Act, the U.S. government is barred from raising certain defenses previously used to deny Camp Lejeune water contamination claims by veterans and family members who suffered cancer, birth defects, Parkinson’s disease, and other serious health problems allegedly caused by the contaminated water supply. However, in order to be eligible to file a Camp Lejeune water contamination lawsuit and pursue damages from the government for their injuries, affected individuals must first provide the U.S. Navy’s Office of the Judge Advocate General (JAG) with official notice of their claim and exhaust the administrative claims process. By January 1, 2023, a spokesperson for JAG reported that approximately 14,000 claims had already been filed under the Camp Lejeune Justice Act. Ultimately, it is expected that the number of claims will exceed 100,000 by the time the two-year window closes.
Estimates suggest that, between 1953 and 1987, more than one million men, women, and children residing at Camp Lejeune drank, bathed in, and ingested tainted water containing cancer-causing chemicals like benzene and vinyl chloride. Some reports say that toxic chemicals in the Camp Lejeune water supply may be responsible for upwards of 50,000 cases of breast cancer, 28,000 cases of bladder cancer, and 24,000 cases of renal cancer, as well as thousands of cases of Parkinson’s disease, liver cancer, brain cancer, and other serious health problems affecting former Marines and their loved ones. The contaminated drinking water at Camp Lejeune may also be to blame for thousands of cases of birth defects and wrongful deaths involving unborn children who were exposed to the toxic chemicals in utero.
For years after discovering the issue with the water supply at Camp Lejeune, the federal government systematically rejected attempts by affected veterans and family members to recover the compensation they deserved for their injuries, relying heavily on North Carolina’s ten-year statute of repose, which had already expired by the time the full scope of the problem with the contaminated water was understood. Under the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022, any individual exposed to the contaminated drinking water at Camp Lejune for at least 30 days between 1953 and 1987 is eligible to pursue an injury claim against the government. And if the government fails to resolve the claim within six months via the administrative claims process, the claimant can file a lawsuit in federal court.
The list of adverse health outcomes that have been linked to Camp Lejeune’s contaminated water supply is extensive. It includes bladder cancer, brain cancer, breast cancer, acute myeloid leukemia (AML), kidney cancer, liver cancer, lung cancer, multiple myeloma, Parkinson’s disease, birth defects, female infertility, and more. If you or someone you know was stationed at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987 and has been diagnosed with one or more of these health problems, contact Consumer Safety Watch today. You may finally have the opportunity to access settlement benefits for the harm you and your loved ones have suffered as a result of your injuries.