Did Camp Lejeune Contaminated Water Cause Lung Cancer?

Toxic substances detected in the water at Camp Lejeune included trichloroethylene (TCE), tetrachloroethylene (PCE), benzene, and vinyl chloride. (2)

The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) makes it clear the amount, length, and mode of exposure to these toxic chemicals are key factors in development of many adverse health effects. (3)

ATSDR mortality studies were done on civilian employees and military personnel at Camp Lejeune. The purpose of these studies was to see if there is an increased risk of death from health conditions, including lung cancer, among anyone exposed to toxic water at Camp Lejeune. (4)

Increased Risks from TCE and PCE

Scientific evidence is mounting that exposure to TCE, PCE, and vinyl chloride may be linked with lung cancer. (5) Additionally, it is a known fact PCE can break down into TCE and vinyl chloride. (6)

TCE is a carcinogen, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “Animal studies have reported increases in lung, liver, kidney, and testicular tumors and lymphoma.” (7) Another notable study reports that based on short-term animal experiments, “TCE causes respiratory tract toxicity.” (8)

The danger is even more pronounced when you consider that PCE and TCE not only contaminate soil, they leach into groundwater. They also evaporate into air, allowing vapors to build up in homes. (9)

If you or a loved one have developed lung cancer and were exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune, contact us today to understand your legal rights.

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New Law Allows for Claims Against Camp Lejeune

Our federal government finally took action in 2022. It recognized the accumulating evidence of increased risks for cancers resulting from exposure to the toxic water at Camp Lejeune.

A new law — Honoring our PACT Act — was signed into law by President Biden. The intent of this legislation is “To provide for recovery by individuals who were stationed, lived, or worked at Camp Lejeune, for certain actions of omissions by the United States.” (10)

This law allows you, and others suffering from the contaminated water exposure at Camp Lejeune, to file claims against the U.S. federal government. You can file claims for medical expenses to treat your illnesses. (11)

You may file claims even if you were turned down for governmental benefits in the past. However, there are certain criteria you must meet in order to file a claim.

Who Is Eligible to File a Lawsuit Against Camp Lejeune?

The new PACT Act is very clear regarding who is eligible to file a claim. There are three important criteria to be met: (12)

  • You must have lived, worked, or have been present on Camp Lejeune between August 1953 and December 1957.
  • Your length of exposure must have been at least 30 days total.
  • You must have received a diagnosis of lung cancer (or one of a number of other illnesses and conditions covered by the law).

The PACT Act stipulates you have a narrow window of time to file your claim. So, you need to act quickly.

Camp Lejeune Lung Cancer Lawsuits

Lung cancer lawsuits are now being filed for exposure to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune. Many people who suffered from lung and other cancers are pursuing lawsuits to get compensation, including for any pain and harm they suffered.

In fact, anyone affected by the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune has legal options. You only need to prove you suffered serious health side effects from the exposure. It does not matter if you were a veteran, family member, or someone else who spent significant time on the Marine base between August 1953 and December 1987.

There have been no verdicts reached as of February 2024. And while there are limited settlement opportunities at this time, these cases are still ongoing.

Documentation to Support Your Claim

For you to be successful in your lung cancer lawsuit, you need to provide evidence. This evidence is meant to substantiate the elements of your claim to support that your condition is connected to exposure to toxins in the water at Camp Lejeune.

Documentation to help support your claim includes:

  • Military orders.
  • Military housing records.
  • Records of payments for rent or mortgage.
  • Employment contract.
  • Utility bills.
  • Medical records (diagnosis, tests, medications, and bills and or receipts for treatments).

If you are a victim with a family member who is a veteran, you can also make a claim. You need to provide proof of relationship:

  • Marriage license.
  • Birth certificate.
  • Adoption papers.

This law covers harm done to pregnant women and babies in utero, as well. (13)

If you’ve developed lung cancer from the Camp Lejeune water contamination, we are here to help. Contact our team of qualified attorneys to learn more today.

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It is important for you to discuss your case with an attorney — as quickly as possible — to explore all of your legal options.

You want an attorney who is compassionate, knowledgeable, and experienced in environmental and personal injury litigations. These types of litigations can be highly complex.

Weitz & Luxenberg is a recognized leader in complex litigations, with a long history of environmental and personal injury successes. Our team of attorneys are committed and dedicated professionals. They care deeply about what happens to people victimized through “actions of omissions by the United States.” (14)

Our underlying goal in environmental litigations is obtaining relief for the people who become sick because of pollution that could — and should — have been avoided.

How W&L Can Help

W&L is a national law firm with its roots in fighting for veterans, your families, and all those harmed by powerful corporations or government agencies. Time and again we have taken on your fights and won.

Here is a sampling of cases we have successfully resolved for our clients:

  • Hoosick Falls, New York, residents obtained a $65 million settlement when their community water system was contaminated by PFOA (perfluorooctanoic acid).
  • Another PFOA water contamination lawsuit resulted in a $23.5 million settlement for the residents of Petersburgh, New York.
  • More than 150 public water systems received $423 million in settlement when MTBE (methyl tertiary butyl ether) — a gasoline additive — poisoned their water.