Contaminated water on base at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina is estimated to have exposed millions of veterans and their families to toxic amounts of chemicals such as Tetrachloroethylene (PCE) and Benzene that have gone on to cause many cases of cancer, Parkinson’s disease, and other debilitating health conditions.
Filing a Camp Lejeune lawsuit can provide injured veterans and family members who lived on base from 1953 to 1987 for at least 30 days the means to attain compensation for medical bills, lost income, and even pain and suffering.
Even if someone is eligible to file a Camp Lejeune claim, they still have to go through the process of presenting sufficient evidence in the form of documentation of their injuries, residence, etc. The following forms of documentation are essential to do so and should be gathered before beginning the process in order to give your claim the best chance possible at recovering fair compensation for your injuries.
Documentation Proving Residence at Camp Lejeune and Military Records
One of the most integral forms of documentation you need in order to file your Camp Lejeune lawsuit is proof of your residence at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987 for at least 30 days. The 30 days do not need to be consecutive, only cumulative over time.
The following documents can be used to prove that you spent this time on base at Camp Lejeune and were exposed to the contaminated water from Hadnot Point and Tarawa Terrace.
- Tax forms
- Utility bills
- Base housing records
- Military orders
- Leasing agreements
- School enrollment forms
- Insurance policy information
DD214 Documentation of Military Service at Camp Lejeune
Another essential document for Camp Lejeune claims is the DD214. All military service members are issued a DD214 when they are discharged and can use this document as credible proof of many details of their service. The DD214 is required for all service members who are filing a Camp Lejeune claim.
If you do not have your DD12 readily available then you can request a new one. This can be done
- Online through milconnect.dmdc.osd.mil/milconnect/
- Through mail by filling out Form SF180 and sending it to the National Personnel Records Center
Requesting a DD214 can sometimes be a lengthy process so it is recommended that veterans considering a Camp Lejeune claim begin the request process as soon as possible. Next of kin can also request their loved one’s DD214 as well.
Medical Documentation of Your Camp Lejeune Water Contamination-Related Injuries
Part of the Camp Lejeune claims process is clarifying exactly what injuries were suffered as a result of Camp Lejeune water contamination and supporting these claims with necessary medical documentation. Just being stationed at Camp Lejeune during the time period when water supplies were compromised is not enough to seek compensation. Camp Lejeune claimants need to have been diagnosed with one of the following conditions believed to be caused by the contamination of water supplies at the base.
- Aplastic anemia and other myelodysplastic syndromes
- Bladder cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Liver cancer
- Multiple myeloma
- Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma
- Parkinson's disease
- Esophageal cancer
- Breast cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Multiple myeloma
- Renal toxicity
- Female infertility
- Lung cancer
- Leukemia (blood cancer)
- Myelodysplastic syndromes
- Hepatic steatosis
- Neurobehavioral effects
These medical conditions are part of the VA’s list of Camp Lejeune presumptive conditions as well as the Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012. In order to support claims of having suffered these injuries so that they can receive compensation, claimants are expected to provide credible documentation of the following kinds.
- Medical imaging and test results
- Official diagnoses
- Medical bills
- Surgery and other treatment documentation
- Doctor visit summaries
Additional Documentation of Your Camp Lejeune Illness Damages
Camp Lejeune water contamination has caused veterans and families significant losses due to the costs generated by illnesses caused by the tainted water. These damages are a major part of Camp Lejeune claims so appropriate documentation of them can mean all the difference in establishing their credibility. Common damages in Camp Lejeune claims include the following.
- Medical bills
- Hospital stays
- Ambulance costs
- Doctor visits
- Medical devices
- Lost earning potential
- Lost wages
- Missed promotions
- Change in position
- Loss of opportunity
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of quality of life
Naming these damages in a Camp Lejeune claim is not enough. Claimants will need to back up these damages with proof in the form of documentation. Getting ahold of bills, pay stubs, and other financial proof of the costs associated with your injuries is integral both when it comes to proving your damages and effectively calculating them.
Documentation of less tangible damages like pain and suffering can be more difficult but still possible. Mental anguish and distress can be proven through documentation of therapeutic or psychological treatment for these problems and even personal documentation in the form of journals and correspondence can help illustrate the trauma caused by Camp Lejeune illnesses.
Time is of the Essence When Filing Camp Lejeune Lawsuits
Gathering all of this documentation as soon as possible will benefit a potential Camp Lejeune claim. Waiting while you consider your options can make getting ahold of this documentation harder and affect your pursuit of a Camp Lejeune settlement.
Camp Lejeune claims also have a deadline to be filed by August 2024. After filing a Camp Lejeune claim, the DOJ is expected to respond within six months. Claimants left waiting for a response after this six-month period can file a Camp Lejeune lawsuit to sue the government for their damages.
Contact an Experienced Camp Lejeune Lawyer
If you or a loved one lived on base at Camp Lejeune for at least 30 cumulative days between 1953 and 1987 and suffered from injuries related to exposure to contaminated water on the base then consider contacting an experienced personal injury lawyer about your case. Meeting with a Camp Lejeune lawyer can put your claim on the right track by putting it in the hands of professionals with insight and experience that makes all the difference.
Your Camp Lejeune attorney will work with you to help determine what documents you have available to prove your claim and to submit them properly to lend your case the best possible credibility. The stakes of these cases are high which means Camp Lejeune claimants need to take every step necessary to give their case the advantage. Personal injury lawyers are not just legal resources to advocate on your behalf but allies invested in the outcome of your claim.