Toxic Water at Lejeune?
Ultimate Guide to Understanding Camp Lejeune Water Contamination. If you served at Camp Lejeune, lived on the base, or were a civilian worker, you were likely exposed to toxic substances in the water. Those on the base between 1953 and 1987 could now have developed a serious illness, adult cancer or childhood cancer, and be entitled to financial compensation over the toxic chemicals found.
It’s important to understand what happened at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. Your military service helped your country, and now it’s time for the personal injury lawyers at Ehline Law Firm to assist you. A presumptive conditions lawsuit doesn’t affect your VA claims or VA disability benefits eligibility, so please call for a consultation today to discuss your legal rights!
Contaminated Drinking Water Found at Camp Lejeune Marine Base
Camp Lejeune water contamination victims were likely exposed to the contaminated drinking water before 1987. The two main water supply systems on the Camp Lejeune base had chemicals called volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Such compounds are dangerous for humans and are known carcinogens.
- Vinyl Chloride
- Perchloroethylene (PCE)
- Trichloroethylene (TCE).
What are these chemicals involved, and why are they so bad?
Benzene is primarily used to make different chemicals for synthetic fibers, resins, nylon, and plastics.
Vinyl chloride is made when PCE and TCE in the groundwater degrade.
Sometimes called PERC, perchloroethylene is used to degrease metals and in dry-cleaning practices. Exposure could lead to irritation of the throat, nose, skin, eyes, and respiratory system. It’s a potential carcinogen and could lead to liver cancer.
Tetrachloroethylene is a scouring solvent used to remove oil from fabrics. It can also be a carrier solvent and works like a water repellant. Therefore, many dry-cleaning facilities used it, and one was located near Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.
Trichloroethylene was the preferred solvent to clean metal parts at the time. Therefore, Camp Lejeune water contamination is prevalent because it gets into the groundwater, causes people to become sick, and leads to death.
Why Was It Left for So Many Years?
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry claims that the VOCs in the water wells surpassed the EPA’s limits of what was okay. The contaminated water was initially discovered in 1982. Still, it took three years longer before anyone shut the wells down for the Marines, children, and workers with access to Camp Lejeune contaminated water.
Those in power wanted to hide the fact that volatile organic compounds (VOCs) were used on the base, causing the Camp Lejeune water contamination history to be obscured until recently.
However, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry claims that the Camp Lejeune water contamination continued from 1950 until 1987, leaving hundreds of thousands of people, possibly your loved ones, potentially exposed to the toxic chemicals and suffering.
Over the years, scientific and medical evidence has come to light that indicates those toxic chemicals were harmful. Many people exposed to the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina have severe health conditions they battle with as they get older.
Military service members and their families could receive disability compensation because of the Camp Lejeune water contamination situation. Ehline Law Firm can assist, requesting your medical records and information about your military service. Those who bathed or used the drinking water and have a listed illness should speak to us and let us seek compensation immediately.
Camp Lejeune Justice Act
Congress passed a bipartisan bill that could help those who worked or lived at Camp Lejeune from 1953 to 1987 and were then diagnosed with serious illnesses or cancer. They deserve compensation for their injuries and their disability benefits from the VA.
Unfortunately, many veterans were exposed to toxic drinking water and developed serious conditions. Many vets had their claims denied unfairly. Many pass away waiting for care. This led to additional harm for the survivors who suffered the loss of a loved one.
Overall the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 hopes to allow individuals and veterans to file claims in the US federal court for any financial damages. It’s part of the Honoring Our PACT Act. These people must have lived, been stationed at, exposed in-utero, or worked at Camp Lejeune and used the contaminated water between the years of 1953 and 1987.
Through the PACT Act and Justice Act, you can finally receive compensation for out-of-pocket treatment costs and much more. It’s in your best interest to file a money damages claim and get started today by calling for assistance! Contact us at (833) LETS-SUE.
Camp Lejeune Families Act
Congress passed the Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act in 2012 because of the toxic water. Under the legislation, veterans and family members exposed to the contaminated water automatically qualify for some medical benefits.
This Act provides VA health care benefits to the veterans with qualifying conditions, but they must have served on active duty for 30 days at Camp Lejeune. Because of the toxic water, eligible family members are also covered for Camp Lejeune injuries.
Generally, there’s no need to hire Camp Lejeune lawyers, but it’s often easier for Marine Corps veterans to do this. If we establish an attorney-client relationship with you, we can help you get your VA disability benefits and file the Camp Lejeune claim.
What Does It Mean?
The Camp Lejeune water contamination fiasco took a long time to come to light. Many veterans had their disability benefits cut and had to pay out of pocket for health care related to the toxic chemicals in the drinking water.
Now that everyone knows about the contaminated water exposure at Camp Lejeune, they can’t hide the medical evidence indicating that those chemicals found in the water supply were the reason for all those health conditions or other health problems listed below.
Starting the claims process doesn’t affect your disability benefits as a veteran. You could be entitled to financial or disability compensation, and you don’t have to be a veteran.
Family Members, Civilian Workers, and Veterans Exposed at Camp Lejeune Could Be Eligible for Financial Compensation
You could be entitled to disability compensation for the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune if:
- You were diagnosed with the health issues listed below
- You served on active duty, worked at, or resided at Camp Lejeune from 1953 to 1987.
The Camp Lejeune water contamination issue is a hot-button topic right now, and we want to make sure you get everything you’re entitled to. Since it doesn’t affect your disability benefits, checking into this and filing a claim over contaminants and certain conditions listed is a smart move.
Severe Illnesses Associated with Camp Lejeune Water Contamination
Veterans and their families affected by the Camp Lejeune water contamination must have worked or lived at the base for 30 days between August 1953 and December 1987.
It doesn’t have to be consecutive, and you could be entitled to receive health benefits for these medical conditions that are linked to the water at Camp Lejeune:
- Adult Leukemia
- Aplastic Anemia and other myelodysplastic syndromes
- Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
- Liver Cancer
- Bladder Cancer
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Multiple Myeloma
- Kidney Cancer.
These conditions listed above are considered presumptive service connection-related.
Explaining the Eight Diseases in More Detail
Leukemia is blood cell cancer. The bone marrow makes your blood cells; the white ones fight infection, while the red ones carry oxygen to your body’s tissues. There are also platelets to help your blood clot.
When you have leukemia, the bone marrow (spongy tissue inside your bones) creates abnormal white blood cells. They push out the correct blood cells, so your blood can’t circulate and function correctly.
There are four leukemia classifications, which are characterized by how quickly they grow and what blood cell type they affect:
- Acute leukemia often develops quickly, affecting immature blood cells.
- Chronic leukemia develops more slowly, affecting mature blood cells.
- Lymphocytic leukemia affects your lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell.
- Myeloid leukemia affects your myelocytes, yet another white blood cell type.
Adult leukemia primarily develops in adults from 55 to 64 years old, though it does occur at any age. The exact cause is unknown, but scientists have identified certain risk factors.
- Radiation exposure
- Previous treatments with certain drugs (chemotherapy)
- Exposure to certain chemicals.
Typically, people experience easy bruising, pale skin, and fatigue when they have it.
Aplastic Anemia and Other Myelodysplastic Syndromes
Aplastic anemia is a sporadic blood disorder that occurs when the bone marrow doesn’t produce enough blood cells. It’s often caused by exposure to radiation and chemicals, certain medications, and cancer.
The symptoms can include easy bleeding, easy bruising, shortness of breath, and fatigue. Treatments consist of immunosuppressive therapy, bone marrow transplants, and blood transfusions.
Myelodysplastic syndromes are conditions affecting the blood and bone marrow. The same things often cause them. However, symptoms vary depending on your syndrome and can include bleeding, bruising, fatigue, and shortness of breath. The same treatments apply, such as bone marrow transplants, blood transfusions, and immunosuppressive therapy.
Bladder cancer means that malignant cells form in your bladder’s tissues. Risk factors include exposure to toxins, smoking, gender, and age. Older individuals are at a higher risk because their bodies have more time to accumulate mutations in the cells.
Some chemicals found in workplace environments lead to an increased risk of developing the disease. That’s what happened at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. The nearby dry-cleaning company used such toxins, which seeped into the groundwater.
There’s no cure for bladder cancer, but early treatment and detection can reduce your symptoms and improve your chances of recovery. Regular screening tests and lifestyle changes are proactive steps people can take if they’re at a high risk of developing this cancer.
Kidney cancer develops in either kidney, though it affects the left one most often. This type of cancer is usually found in adults over 50 years old, and it’s more common in men than in women.
Symptoms can include blood in your urine, weight loss, and back pain. If you don’t treat it soon, cancer may spread to other body parts and become fatal. Treatment often includes surgery to remove the kidney. However, radiation therapy and chemotherapy are also used in most cases.
Liver cancer is a highly aggressive disease and is hard to treat. Your liver is vital and performs crucial functions, such as producing bile to digest food and filtering toxins from your blood. Cancerous cells often spread quickly, which causes extensive damage.
The symptoms of this cancer may include abdominal pain, fatigue, loss of appetite, and weight loss. However, it’s so aggressive that the disease is usually fatal to those who get it. Treatment options are slim and include targeted therapy, chemotherapy, and surgery.
Multiple myeloma is one type of cancer affecting the plasma cells in your body. This causes them to grow uncontrollably, which crowds out the healthy blood cells. It often has severe consequences for the person’s overall health and includes symptoms such as frequent infections, anemia, muscle weakness, and fatigue.
No one knows the exact cause of this condition, but certain risk factors increase your likelihood of developing it. They include being over 65 years old, having a history of multiple myeloma in your family, and being exposed to radiation and certain toxins.
Right now, the disease doesn’t have a cure, but treatments could help you manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life. They include bone marrow transplants, immunotherapy drugs, and chemotherapy. With proper care and treatment, most people with the condition live healthy and happy lives.
NHL (Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma) is a blood cancer affecting the lymphatic system. Symptoms can vary significantly, depending on how aggressive the tumor is and its location. However, you will likely experience weight loss, fatigue, swollen lymph nodes, and night sweats.
There’s no cure for Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, but treatment options alleviate discomfort and slow its progression. They include radiation and chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and stem cell transplants.
Getting an early diagnosis and collaborating effectively with your healthcare provider to manage your disease is important. With the right support and care, most people live full and long lives.
Parkinson’s disease affects movement and is a neurological disorder. It’s one of the most common, and you can expect symptoms like slow movements, rigidity, and tremors. There’s no cure right now for this condition, but treatments may improve your quality of life.
Sometimes, surgery is necessary to implant brain stimulation devices deep into your head. They help you control movement better. Scientists are constantly developing new therapies, and researchers believe that a better understanding of this condition can lead to even more effective treatments.
What’s the Presumptive Service Connection?
A presumptive service connection indicates that the Department of Veterans Affairs formally acknowledges that the water at Camp Lejeune was likely responsible for those eight conditions listed above.
When you file lawsuits relating to Camp Lejeune, you must submit medical evidence and medical records demonstrating that your conditions are linked to your military service. However, they require no other documentation.
Other Health Conditions
Camp Lejeune’s water was so toxic that some people might have other presumptive conditions other than adult leukemia, aplastic anemia, and other myelodysplastic syndromes, along with the rest of the list. You may have to show additional information besides medical records, including base housing records and more.
It’s best to hire an attorney to help you through the process.
The drinking water at Camp Lejeune could also lead to:
- Renal toxicity
- Neurobehavioral effects
- Lung cancer
- Hepatic steatosis
- Female infertility
- Esophageal cancer
- Breast cancer
- Cancer of the central nervous system
- Prostate cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
- Cardiac defects.
Health Care Benefits
Veterans and families can receive health care benefits.
The VA health care option pays people for any out-of-pocket costs relating to these conditions (with proof in some cases):
- Renal toxicity
- Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
- Neurobehavioral effects
- Myelodysplastic syndromes
- Multiple myeloma
- Lung cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Hepatic steatosis
- Female infertility
- Esophageal cancer
- Breast cancer
- Bladder cancer
Family Members Getting Benefits
If you’re a family member of a veteran stationed at Camp Lejeune, you must file a claim to receive disability compensation. However, you need to provide supporting documents (evidence).
The Evidence Required
- Documents proving the relationship to the active duty veteran who was at Camp Lejeune for 30 days or more (can include adoption papers, birth certificate, and marriage license)
- Documents proving you lived at Camp Lejeune for 30 days between August 1953 and December 1987 (can include military orders, base housing records, tax forms, and utility bills)
- Medical records indicating that you’ve got one of the conditions above (must include the date of your diagnosis and that you were treated or are being treated for the illness.)
You must also provide evidence of the paid health care expenses you incurred for the claimed condition during a time period shown below:
- January 1, 1953, and December 31, 1987 (those who lived at Camp Lejeune during that time get reimbursement for the care received from the Department of Veterans Affairs on/after August 6, 2012, or for two years before the application date)
- August 1, 1953, and December 31, 1956 (those who lived at Camp Lejeune / MCAS New river during that time get reimbursement for the care received from the Department of Veterans Affairs on/after December 16, 2014, or for two years before the application date for benefits.)
What to Do If You’re Not Sure
Many veterans and their families are confused about the rules on building a Camp Lejeune water contamination lawsuit. We all know that veterans are covered, but what about their family members? Ehline Law Firm can listen to your story and determine your options.
How to Choose Camp Lejeune Attorneys
We know that this is a difficult time for you and the family. Filing a lawsuit under the best circumstances is overwhelming and sometimes out of reach for service members.
You must have the support of an experienced team on your side to help you with the Camp Lejeune toxic water lawsuit. Once we determine that you have a case because you were denied VA benefits and want to get your treatment costs reimbursed, we can establish an attorney-client relationship.
What We Do For You
When searching for lawyers to help with your Camp Lejeune toxic water claim, find a law firm that offers:
- Free case reviews – Don’t wonder about your legal recourse and rights. Let us find out what happened and if the water caused your health problems.
- History of success – Ehline Law Firm fights hard to get what you’re entitled to. Health complications from being at the Marine Corps base camp can be costly. Such toxic exposure can’t go unnoticed, and your medical treatment is crucial to your quality of life.
- Decades of experience – Our law firm has helped thousands of injured clients secure compensation and justice from negligent people.
It’s not easy to learn that your children’s birth defects or your liver cancer could have been caused by you being in the National Guard or Marine Corps. It would help if you took legal action against Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune now, and we can help you gather evidence, such as a physician report, military orders, and more.
File a Claim Relating to the Camp Lejeune Water
When you work with us, we make filing your Camp Lejeune toxic water claim stress-free for military veterans or the family member in charge. If you’ve got a case, through the PACT act or the Justice Act, your health problems could be paid for, and you should receive VA benefits.
We can help with your Camp Lejeune settlement.
What We Do
Our Camp Lejeune lawyers focus on the claims process. Therefore, your Camp Lejeune lawsuit includes the following:
- Building a strong case with evidence, medical records, and testimony
- Determining if you’re eligible to file with a free consultation
- Filing the lawsuit for you
- Negotiating settlement amounts
- Presenting the case in court if necessary.
Verdicts and Settlement Amounts for Camp Lejeune Water Contamination
A Camp Lejeune lawsuit might result in a financial payout for your injuries in two different ways:
- Camp Lejeune settlement – Lawyers helping us back east might negotiate a settlement with the defendants, allowing you to receive compensation faster without going to court.
- Jury verdict – If our legal team and others of counsel can’t reach a settlement amount that is worthy of your time, your case might move to court. A jury and judge might hear the case, determining the compensation amount you get in a verdict. There’s no guarantee of compensation in these situations.
You are ill and served at Camp Lejeune in the Marine Corps in the Eastern District. Now, you’re worried about your life because you were diagnosed with kidney, bladder, or other conditions. A family member might have been exposed in-utero and now has congenital disabilities. We offer the resources and legal help to get families living on military bases the compensation they deserve with this new law called the PACT ACT!
Symptoms You Might Experience after Being at Camp Lejeune
Exposure to water contamination at Camp Lejeune could cause many health problems, such as cancers, Parkinson’s disease, and others. Initial symptoms can include neurobehavioral effects (changes to cognitive functioning and behavior).
You may also experience the following:
- Hepatitis A
- Light sensitivity
- Lack of coordination
- Numbness in the limbs
- Trouble concentrating
- Skin infections (impetigo or dermatitis.).
Many of these symptoms are caused by various cancers, such as kidney cancer, but they relate to other conditions, too. If you served at Camp Lejeune or were a family member of someone stationed there, you should visit a doctor, get a diagnosis, and call us.
Ehline Law Firm Can Help if You Were Exposed to Toxic Water at Camp Lejeune
President Biden will sign this legislation swiftly. And you will have a limited time to bring a civil action. The Camp Lejeune water contamination situation exposed many people to toxic chemicals while living, working, or stationed at the base. There have been many instances where Congress has tried to help veterans, such as through the PACT Act and the Justice Act of 2022.
While the VA has made it easier to get benefits, you may want to file a Camp Lejeune water lawsuit. This includes giving data about your family history and providing confidential or sensitive information about the time you served at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987.
If you drank or bathed in the toxic water at Camp Lejeune, you might want to establish a Camp Lejeune lawsuit if your symptoms are on the presumptive conditions list. You need the best Camp Lejeune attorneys, and Ehline Law Firm is here to help you sue the government over their fault on base water wells. Please call (833) LETS-SUE for a consultation today!
Michael Ehline is an inactive U.S. Marine and world famous legal historian. Michael helped draft the Cruise Ship Safety Act and has won some of the largest motorcycle accident settlements in U.S. History. Together with his legal team, Michael and the Ehline Law Firm collect damages on behalf of clients. We pride ourselves in being available to answer your most pressing and difficult questions 24/7. We are proud sponsors of the Paul Ehline Memorial Motorcycle Ride, and a a Service Disabled Veteran Operated Business. (SDVOB.) We are ready to fight.
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