The reopening of the VCF allows 9/11 survivors and responders to obtain financial compensation

Treven Pyles

By Treven Pyles

Posted on October 11th, 2023

While the original Victim Compensation Fund operated from 2001 to 2004, it was reopened in 2011 after the signing of the Zadroga Act, which now enables 9/11 survivors and responders to access financial compensation for their injuries and illnesses.

The 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) was created to provide compensation to individuals or personal representatives of deceased individuals who experienced physical harm or were killed as a consequence of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, or the debris removal endeavors that took place during the immediate aftermath of the crashes. The original VCF operated between 2001 and 2004. However, on January 2, 2011, President Obama signed into law the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, which reactivated the VCF. The reactivated program opened in October 2011 and was authorized to operate for five years until October 2016.

On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed a bill reauthorizing the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act. This included the reauthorization of the VCF. The new law extended the program for five years, allowing people to submit claims until December 18, 2020. Still, on July 29, 2019, President Trump signed into law the Never Forget the Heroes: James Zadroga, Ray Pfeifer, and Luis Alvarez Permanent Authorization of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Act. The VCF Permanent Authorization Act extends the claim filing deadline of the program from December 18, 2020, to October 1, 2090.

To be eligible for compensation, the VCF Act requires a person to have suffered "physical harm or death as a result of" one of the terrorist-related aircraft crashes of September 11, 2001, or debris removal. Furthermore, to file a claim, one must meet these criteria:

  • register with the VCF by the deadline applicable to their individual circumstances and submit their claim no later than October 1, 2090
  • show that they have a 9/11-related physical injury or health condition certified for treatment by the World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program
  • prove that you were present at one of the attack sites, within the NYC Exposure Zone, or along the routes of debris removal between September 11, 2001, and May 30, 2002

The VCF Permanent Authorization Act funded the VCF and extended the claim filing deadline until October 1, 2090. While the VCF encourages people to file their claims after they have been certified by the WTC Health Program for a 9/11-related physical health condition and as soon as the complete scope of their claimed losses is known so that their claim for compensation can be reviewed as fast as possible, the last date on which someone can file a claim is October 1, 2090. There is a separate deadline by which a person needs to register with the VCF. It is worth noting that registration is not the same as filing a claim, as it just preserves the right to file a claim in the future, does not obligate you to file a claim, and waives no legal rights.

If you were injured or developed a disease as a result of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, we advise you to get in touch with our toxic exposure attorneys, who will gladly assist you in filing your Victim Compensation Fund claim to obtain the financial compensation you deserve for your suffering. The legal process is simple and requires minimal involvement from you, as we are well aware that survivors and responders often struggle with debilitating injuries and illnesses. We will carefully and thoroughly evaluate your case to determine your eligibility.

Quality legal assistance for 9/11 victims seeking money from the Victim Compensation Fund

With over 30 years of experience in pursuing financial compensation for toxic exposure victims, our diligent attorneys are ready to offer you the assistance you need if you are a 9/11 victim who intends to file a claim with the Victim Compensation Fund. The only documents we will request to assess your case are evidence of your presence in the Exposure Zone and your medical records with your diagnosis.

If we establish that you are eligible, we will go to great lengths to obtain the most favorable outcome for your case. We operate on a contingency fee basis, which means that you will not have to pay anything out of pocket unless we recover money for you.