UPDATE: Camp Lejeune Contaminated Water Lawsuit & FAQ'sSeptember 20, 2023
1. What is the Camp Lejeune Justice Act (CLJA) and the Elective Option (EO)?
The Camp Lejeune Justice Act (CLJA) is a legal framework that allows individuals with certain injuries resulting from exposure to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune to seek compensation. The Elective Option (EO) is a voluntary process within CLJA for claimants to resolve their claims more quickly and efficiently compared to litigation.
2. Who is eligible for the Elective Option (EO)?
Claimants with Qualifying Injuries who resided or worked at Camp Lejeune for at least 30 days are eligible for the EO. Qualifying Injuries are specific diseases or conditions identified under CLJA.
3. Will accepting an EO offer affect my VA benefits?
No, accepting an EO offer will not affect your VA benefits. VA benefits will not be offset due to EO payments.
4. Why are only specific diseases considered Qualifying Injuries under the EO?
The Qualifying Injuries are based on scientific evidence of causation, as determined by the Agency for Toxic Substance and Disease Registry (ATSDR). These diseases have stronger links to exposure to contaminants in Camp Lejeune's water.
5. How are EO settlement amounts determined?
The EO uses a grid system based on the type of Qualifying Injury and the duration of exposure to calculate settlement amounts. Tier 1 Qualifying Injuries have higher settlement amounts than Tier 2 Qualifying Injuries, and longer durations of exposure result in higher settlements. Please see grid below.
6. What if I have more than one Qualifying Injury?
If you have multiple Qualifying Injuries, you will be compensated for the injury that provides the highest compensation. EO settlements are on a per-claimant basis, not per injury.
7. Can I check the status of my administrative claim?
Currently, the Department of the Navy and the Department of Justice cannot provide updates on the status of individual claims. Claimants represented by attorneys should contact their attorneys for status updates.
8. What happens if I decline an EO settlement offer?
If you decline an EO offer, you can keep your administrative claim with the Department of the Navy. Alternatively, you can explore other legal options, such as filing a lawsuit in federal court, provided certain conditions are met.
9. Does the EO apply to claims already in litigation?
No, the EO does not apply to claims already in litigation. However, the Department of Justice has a process for resolving claims currently in litigation consistent with the EO.
Please note that this FAQ provides general information about the Camp Lejeune Justice Act and the Elective Option and is not legal advice. Consult an attorney for personalized guidance regarding your specific situation.