Ongoing Efforts to Settle Camp Lejeune Injury Claims Outlined in Latest Status Report

While working to reach a global Camp Lejeune water contamination lawsuit settlement, the U.S. Government has agreed to make over $4 million in payments for cancer, kidney damage and Parkinson’s disease claims

As lawyers continue to prepare groups of Camp Lejeune water contamination lawsuits involving certain injuries for early bellwether trials, which are intended to drive global settlement negotiations, the U.S. government reports that it has agreed to settle more than a dozen claims involving bladder cancer, kidney cancer, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, multiple myeloma, kidney disease and Parkinson’s disease, amounting to more than $4 million in payouts to veterans and their family members.

Approximately 18 months ago, President Joe Biden signed the Camp Lejeune Justice Act (CJLA) of 2022 into law, which opened a two-year window for veterans, military family members and other individuals who served at Camp Lejeune to file a lawsuit against the U.S. government for injuries and diseases caused by exposure to contaminated water.

More than 170,000 U.S. Marines and family members who were exposed to the water at Camp Lejeune have now submitted claims for settlement benefits after being diagnosed with various types injuries linked to toxic chemicals between the mid-1950s and late-1980s.

Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Lawsuit

Suffer From Health Issues Due To The Water At Camp Lejeune?

Water contamination at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina between 1953 and 1987 caused cancers, birth defects, miscarriages and other side effects for U.S. Marines and their family members.

Learn More About this Lawsuit See If You Qualify For Compensation

Camp Lejeune Lawsuit Settlements Reached

The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina has exclusive jurisdiction over the litigation, and the parties have been directed to submit regular updates on the Camp Lejeune lawsuit status, including progress on discovery, as well as efforts to settle claims.

In a report (PDF) submitted on February 27, 2024, the U.S. Government confirmed that it has successfully verified that at least 48 administrative claims are eligible for payouts under an elective settlement option announced late last year, based on thorough documentary examination.

The verified and eligible claims include a range of serious health conditions, including 13 cases of bladder cancer, 12 of kidney cancer, 10 of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, five of kidney disease, three each of Parkinson’s disease and leukemia, and two of multiple myeloma.

Of these 48 verified administrative claims, seventeen have reached settlement agreements that have been accepted by plaintiffs, totaling approximately $4.1 million in Camp Lejeune claim payouts. The settlements outlined in the recent status report indicate offers have been accepted for the following amounts and corresponding injuries;

  • Bladder Cancer ($150,000; $150,000; $300,000; $300,00; $450,000)
  • Kidney Disease ($250,000; $100,000; $100,000)
  • Kidney Cancer ($300,000; $300,000; $300,00; $300,000; $150,000)
  • Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma ($150,000; $150,000)
  • Multiple Myeloma ($250,000)
  • Parkinson’s Disease ($400,000)

In addition to the offers accepted by claimants, the U.S. Government indicates seven offers have been rejected, eighty offers have expired, and 16 offers are currently pending.

Further, The Department of Justice (DOJ), indicates it has made settlement offers to 58 claimants who have already filed lawsuits. Out of these, 24 offers were accepted, two were rejected, 19 expired without a response, and seven are still pending a decision.

Payments have been sent for eight accepted settlement offers made by the Navy and seven accepted settlement offers from DOJ, totaling $3,600,000.

Ongoing Efforts to Reach a Global Camp Lejeune Settlement

Over the last several months, the U.S. government and the Plaintiffs’ Leadership Group engaged in discussions aimed at a comprehensive settlement for both the administrative claims filed with the Navy and the lawsuits already filed in the Eastern District of North Carolina.

In a significant step forward, last month the parties jointly proposed appointing Tom Perrelli to serve as a Special Settlement Master. In the latest status report, the parties announced they have agreed to a budget with Mr. Perrelli and the United States is continuing to finalize terms of a contract. It is expected that the parties will hold an initial meeting with Mr. Perrelli by the end of March.

Parallel to these discussions, the Navy has been working to expedite the settlement process for claimants through enhancements to its Claims Management System. Launched in February, this system integrates with the VA’s database to validate claims and supports direct data uploading by participating law firms. This strategic access to VA data is intended to streamline the review and settlement of claims.

While the initial rollout of the new system was only offered to eight participating law firms, selected based on their order of bulk-filed claims, the Navy is on a path to expand this system to more claimants and eventually to the public, aiming to accelerate the settlement process significantly.

Camp Lejeune Bellwether Trials Moving Forward

With at least 1,530 Camp Lejeune water contamination lawsuits filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina by individuals who do not qualify for settlement offers under the elective option, or intend to pursue additional compensation, the four U.S. District Judges overseeing the claims have established two separate “tracks”, which will prepare small groups of representative claims for early Camp Lejeune trial dates.

Late last year, the Court established a first track of Camp Lejeune bellwether lawsuits, and lawyers have selected 100 cases that are currently going through early discovery, including claims that involve:

  • Bladder cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

In a case management order issued last month, the Track 2 Discovery Plan Order was announced, indicating this specific track of cases to be selected for discovery and early trials dates will consist of plaintiffs alleging injuries involving:

  • Prostate Cancer
  • Kidney Disease
  • Lung Cancer
  • Liver Cancer
  • Breast Cancer

While the outcome of the early bellwether trials will not have a binding impact on other claims, the amount of any Camp Lejeune lawsuit payouts awarded may help the parties in those negotiations, by demonstrating how judges are likely to respond in future cases to various types of injuries.

1 Comments

  • AndrewMarch 7, 2024 at 12:22 pm

    An apology for the delays, the denials, and the bad attitudes of DOJ lawyers needs to happen. You don't poison 1 million people and fail to apologize. This is outrageous and every victim needs the following: An apology, heartfelt, from the DOJ. Money payment that matches the true value of all injuries. Lifetime health coverage at no cost to the victims.

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