Is the Elective Option Useful for Camp Lejeune Veterans Facing Settlement Delays?

Is the Elective Option Useful for Camp Lejeune Veterans Facing Settlement Delays?
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The Camp Lejeune water contamination episode hasn’t been easy on the region and its people. The veterans and their relatives to date are awaiting settlements that they were promised regarding overexposure to the toxic waters in this region. There are over 100,000 claims that are filed with the Navy.

Close to a million people who stayed at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987 have been exposed to polluted drinking water. On-base spills and leaks and mishandling of the chemicals have been the major reasons for contamination. It was in August 2022 that President Biden issued the CJLA (Camp Lejeune Justice Act) that enabled veterans to seek compensation for their sufferings and losses because of toxic water exposure in this region.

However, even though the government intended to compensate the veterans, there were unwanted delays. A Bloomberg Law News article highlighted that one of the major reasons for the delay was that the Navy didn’t have an online portal to process the claims seamlessly. The other two reasons included a lack of resources and funds. This delay disappointed the veterans, as some felt maybe they could not get their due compensation during their lifetime.

That’s when the Elective Option was introduced, which is a speedier payout method. This article will discuss the features that this option presents to veterans. Also, we will touch upon whether it’s a helpful choice for veterans who’ve been waiting for their compensation for a long time.

Understanding the Elective Option

Simply put, the Elective Option isn’t a legal term and doesn’t have any real definition. Instead, it is a name given by the U.S. government to a process of speeding up Camp Lejeune settlements. Under this option, voluntary settlements are provided to the sailors, Marines, and families who have suffered and been injured by the polluted drinking water at the military base.

Under this option, the victims having qualifying health conditions will receive payouts of as much as $550,000. A few ailments covered here comprise:

  • Leukemia
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Systemic Sclerosis
  • Bladder Cancer
  • Kidney Disease
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Multiple Myeloma

The overall payout option that the victim will receive is based on the duration they spent at Camp Lejeune. It is estimated that the payout plan will offer quicker relief for the veterans in case they don’t undergo the original claim process. However, you need to discuss it with your lawyer and check if it’s the best option for you or not.

TorHoerman Law states that a lawyer is the best person to let you know about your eligibility to file a lawsuit. They would also look into the matters that are causing delays in obtaining your settlement payout. Additionally, they will also provide you with the necessary guidelines to ensure that you get your settlement amount at the right time so that you can use it to cover damages and medical expenses.

Similarly, if you wish to have a quicker payout through the Elective Option, a lawyer will assess your case and let you know whether you could benefit from that. Ideally, if it’s a senior citizen waiting for a payout and has his days numbered, this option is best to pay for their medical expenses. The same holds for a person who is suffering from a life-threatening disease and needs immediate cash to carry on with the treatment.

The Benefits of the Elective Option

When you are assessing the advantages of the Elective Option, it is necessary to know what you might miss out on if you don’t file a traditional lawsuit. It is necessary to know what is the average payout for the Camp Lejeune lawsuit. Typically, the settlement amounts range between $10,000 and $1,00,000 based on the degree of suffering and duration of exposure.

Therefore, if you consider the lower limit, the Elective Option does look to be beneficial in terms of the payout amount. A few other pros of this option include:

Expedites the Payout Process

Several veterans who filed the Camp Lejeune claims suffer from severe ailments that have reduced their lifespan. In certain cases, the victims have been terminally ill and have only a limited amount of time to live. If there is any victim who wishes to obtain their settlement before they die, this option might prove to be useful.

Helpful for Cases That Are Harder to Prove

Some victims are eligible to file a lawsuit with a qualifying ailment. But they might have spent just about 30 days at the base. Here, the government could argue that there can be other factors that led to the disease. However, under the Elective Option, you are accountable for the compensation that is worth several thousand dollars.

Simplified Eligibility

If a veteran has been stationed at Camp Lejeune for over 30 days between 1953 and 1987 and has a qualifying diagnosis, they can opt for the Elective Option. This process needs less evidence compared to a lawsuit and is also more streamlined.

Therefore, you need to consult your lawyer and decide for yourself which option works best for you. Once you do that, you can make an informed decision.

In conclusion, veterans are unhappy with the delays that are facing the Camp Lejeune settlement payouts. The victims need cash compensation to cover the damages they have endured. It is here that the Elective Option proves to be a helpful alternative with a quicker payout window. If you need immediate cash, this option can help you address your medical expenses and cover the damages caused by the toxic water exposure.

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