Benefits for Firefighters
We needed you on September 11th and throughout the dreadful aftermath. Now it's our turn to help you. You don't have to go through this alone.

World Trade Center VCF Firefighter Lawyer

Benefits for Firefighters from the Victim Compensation Fund (VCF)

Americans will never forget the horrific terrorist attacks at the NYC World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, on September 11th, 2001. First responders such as firefighters, police officers, and paramedics saved countless lives that day. In the months that followed, rescue, recovery, and clean-up efforts at Ground Zero subjected thousands of workers to toxic exposure of known and suspected carcinogens, including asbestos, smoke, exhaust, lead, glass fibers, and other environmental toxins. They were also exposed to diesel fuel as construction workers pursued clean-up with heavy equipment. Rigorous scientific research continues to reveal the hundreds of long-term detrimental health effects suffered by these treasured heroes. This is why we at the law firm of Gregory Cannata & Associates are honored to help 9/11 victims obtain the best possible benefits and compensation for themselves and their loved ones. 

Are you worried about the health of a family member who has suffered injuries after the 9/11 terrorist attacks?  Are you troubled about your own health and the future financial stability of your family? If you are concerned about any negative health conditions or personal injury that could have been the result of the September 11th rescue, recovery, or clean-up efforts, please contact the dedicated lawyers at Gregory Cannata & Associates for expert legal advice, including a free consultation:  Call 1-888-982-8428, or Contact us today.

Sacrifices of NYC Firefighters

For firefighters, the September 11th terrorist attack was the deadliest day in United States history. Fire Department of New York (FDNY) fatalities totaled a devastating one-third of all first responders. As they worked with the NYC Police Department (NYPD) to bring office workers and other civilians to safety, firefighters were impeded by communication difficulties with FDNY superiors while they were simultaneously burdened by heavy equipment, fires, and toxic dust. Tragically, many could not hear orders to evacuate and were killed as the towers fell.

Casualties Continue to Grow

Physical injuries and numerous respiratory illnesses have been eclipsed by more serious diseases that often show up years and even decades after the initial event.  Even though the terrorist attacks occurred almost 20 years ago, 9/11 related illnesses continue to plague firefighters and other responders. As of 2018, over 16,000 people have gotten sick and been granted eligibility for monetary awards through the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. The list continues to grow. 

Medical Research

Numerous medical research studies have uncovered previously unknown 9/11 related illnesses. An analysis of FDNY rescue and recovery workers indicated that new WTC-related cancer cases over a 20-year period (2012 to 2031) will be significantly higher than in the normal population, particularly for thyroid, prostate, and melanoma cancers. Investigators have also documented an increased risk of multiple myeloma in FDNY firefighters who sustained toxic exposure at the WTC crash site.

Cardiovascular disease may also be considered a 9/11 related illness. This correlation is supported by a study of 9796 firefighters who experienced repeated exposures to toxic dust and other contaminants at the crash site. Researchers emphasized the importance of long-term monitoring of cardiovascular health indicators for FDNY firefighters.

Support from Federal Regulations

Since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, several regulations and laws have been supported by victims advocates, politicians, and occupational health experts. They were subsequently passed by the United States Congress. The first bill, called the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, was signed in December of 2001. 

The immense cost of medical care and related monetary awards has necessitated a number of reauthorizations. The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act was signed by President Obama in 2011 and provided for a much-needed expansion of the fund. The most recent change to the Zadroga Act was the Never Forget the Heroes Act of 2019 (also known as the VCF Permanent Authorization Act).  This law extended the filing deadline for claimants from December 2020 to October 1, 2090. 

World Trade Center Cases Addressed by Gregory Cannata & Associates

There are multiple conditions covered by the World Trade Center Health Program. If you suspect that you or one of your family members have suffered from one of these 9/11 related illnesses, please contact the Gregory Cannata & Associates law firm for a free consultation so that our knowledgeable personal injury lawyers can help you make the right decisions regarding your VCF claim. Good planning at the beginning of the claims application process will ensure that you and your loved ones receive the monetary compensation and medical care that you deserve as quickly as possible. 

Our law firm is extremely capable of addressing the multitude of conditions covered by the WTC Health Program. Illnesses are added as new research is published, so this list is not exhaustive. You can confidently rely on Gregory Cannata & Associates to keep up with the latest information on the WTC Victim Compensation Fund and the conditions that it covers.

Here are just a few of the conditions covered by the WTC Health Program.

Cancer

  • Breast Cancer
  • Blood and lymphoid tissue (including lymphoma, myeloma, leukemia)
  • Mesothelioma
  • Thyroid Cancer
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Respiratory System (including lung cancer)

*Rare cancers may include cancer of the central nervous system (brain, spinal cord), pancreas, placenta, or vagina

Airway and Digestive Disorders

  • Gastro-esophageal reflux disorder (GERD)
  • Interstitial lung disease
  • Reactive airway dysfunction syndrome (RADS)
  • New-onset and WTC exacerbated chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Mental Health Conditions
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Substance abuse disorder 

Mental Health Conditions

  • Major depressive disorder
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Substance abuse disorder

Do I Qualify for the World Trade Center Health Program?

Generally, the time frame that the WTC Health Program evaluates is between September 11, 2001, and July 31, 2002. There are exceptions to these time limits depending on individual circumstances. If you were present in lower Manhattan, in the area south of Canal Street during those times, we recommend that you get reliable legal advice from the Gregory Cannata & Associates law firm as soon as possible. Our attorneys will guide you through the process and discuss the requirements with you and your loved ones so that you can focus on your health.

We are Here to Help You Meet the Challenge

Qualifying for the WTC Health Program is a critical step towards receiving additional awards through the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. Keep in mind that you did not have to be present on 9/11 to qualify for compensation under the Zadroga Act. 

Filing for a VCF award is a daunting task. Many people find the VCF claims process difficult to navigate on their own, especially when they are undergoing treatment for cancer, GERD, or respiratory illness at the same time. The complexities of sifting through and determining the many eligibility requirements are understandably overwhelming to even the most well-informed individuals. 

In Conclusion

The memory of the 9/11 terrorist attacks will be forever emblazoned in our collective national consciousness. In reality, you, as a firefighter, first responder, crash site volunteer, and loved one, are still fighting those battles in the form of on-going health crises and financial challenges.

As our heroes continue to suffer in the grips of cancer and other conditions, NYC Fire Commissioner Dan Nigro aptly lamented in a 2018 ABC interview:  

"...seeing the list of heroes grow each year with no end in sight."

The legal team at Gregory Cannata & Associates places a high value on building positive and trusting client relationships. We work comprehensively and diligently to ensure the best possible outcomes for all clients. 

We needed you on September 11th and throughout the dreadful aftermath. Now it's our turn to help you. You don't have to go through this alone. Please contact us or call 1-888-982-8428 for a free consultation.

References

[1] Kaplan, K. (2018, April 26). For firefighters who worked in World Trade Center rubble, the future includes a heightened risk of cancer. Los Angeles Times.

[2] Zeig-Owens, R., MPH, Webber, M.P., Hall, C.B., Schwartz, T., Jaber, N., Weakley, J.,…Prezant, D.J. (2011). Early assessment of cancer outcomes in New York City firefighters after the 9/11 attacks: an observational cohort study. Lancet. 378(9794): 898–905. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(11)60989-6.

[3] Kiger, P.J. (2019, May 20) How 9/11 Became the Deadliest Day in History for U.S. Firefighters.

[4] Katersky, A., (2018, September 10). The 9/11 toll still grows: More than 16,000 Ground Zero responders who got sick found eligible for awards.

[5] Singh, A., Zeig-Owens, R., Moir, W., Hall, C.B., Schwartz, T., Vossbrinck, M.,…Prezant, D.J. (2018). Estimation of future cancer burden among rescue and recovery workers exposed to the World Trade Center Disaster. Journal of the American Medical Association-Oncology,4(6):828-831. doi:10.1001/jamaoncol.2018.0504.

[6] Landgren, O., Zeig-Owens, R., Giricz, O., Godfarb, D., Murata, K., Thoren, K.,…Prezant, D.J. (2018). Multiple myeloma and its precursor disease among firefighters exposed to the World Trade Center disaster. Journal of the American Medical Association, Oncology, 4(6):828-831. doi:10.1001/jamaoncol.2018.0504.

[7] Cohen, H.W., Zeig-Owens, R., Joe, C., Hall, C., Webber, M.P., Weiden, M.D. …Prezant, D.J. (2019). Long-term cardiovascular disease risk among firefighters after the World Trade Center disaster. JAMA Network Open, 2(9):e199775. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2019.9775.

[8] Rosasco, T.G. (2011, January 11). The Zadroga 9/11 Compensation Act of 2010.

[9] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020, December 17 [Last Update]). World Trade Center Health Program: Covered conditions.

[11] Katersky, A., (2018, September 10). The 9/11 toll still grows: More than 16,000 Ground Zero responders who got sick found eligible for awards.

$10 Billion Now Available to 9/11 Victims, Limited Time to Apply
Congress recently extended the deadline for applicants, but strict filing requirements still apply. Contact our VCF lawyers today to learn if you qualify.
Gregory J.
Cannata
Partner
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VCF lawyers Gregory Cannata and Robert Grochow
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Grochow
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