Awards under the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) are determined by the Fund’s Special Master, Rupa Bhattacharyya.
In order to receive an award, a VCF claimant must first be found to be “eligible for compensation,” generally by submitting written proof or records showing that the claimant was present in the “crash site” area between September 11, 2001 and May 30, 2002 and has a 9/11-related disease or cancer.
After a claimant is found to be eligible, the VCF then calculates the financial award. VCF awards have two components or parts:
- First, the VCF makes an award for “non-economic loss,” which is more commonly known as pain and suffering. The award for non-economic loss can vary greatly from one person to another, and depends in large part on the quality of the proof submitted and the strong arguments made by the claimant’s attorney. In many cases, the VCF award is only for non-economic loss, since there may not be economic loss such as lost earnings. Every individual case is different.
- The second part of a VCF award is the “economic loss” component or part of the award. Economic loss can include an award for lost earnings, lost benefits such as a pension or health benefits, past out-of-pocket medical expenses, and past and future household services.
- After all of the lost earnings and other economic losses are calculated, the VCF makes deductions for items such as other payments received (such as related disability pensions, Social Security disability payments, workers’ compensation,), and then issues what is called a “loss calculation letter” giving the details of both of the components of the award and a total of the award.
Overall, 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund awards vary quite a bit and range from a zero to millions dollars. The amount of the award -if an award is made at all – often depends on the quality and thoroughness of the claim submitted by the claimant’s attorney.
Should you have questions about medical care or an award from the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, please call us at 1- 800-887-7299.