Over the past decade, tens of thousands of survivors, responders, and anyone else who suffered injuries or illnesses after exposure to 9/11 toxins, have filed claims with the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) to seek compensation for pain and suffering. Additionally, loved ones of deceased victims have also filed claims through the VCF.
The VCF, along with the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP), was created in 2011 under the Zadroga Act, which provides a means where qualifying individuals may seek medical treatment and compensation through government-funded programs. Given the large volume of claims, however, the VCF has faced administrative challenges in recent years.
To streamline the process of submitting and tracking Victim Compensation Fund claims, the VCF has begun implementing “myVCF,” a new portal that will allow claimants to access real-time data about the status of their VCF claims.
Key Features of the VCF Claimant Portal
With swift advances in technology, the need for paper has become less necessary as time goes by. The VCF claims system is a paper-free way for claimants and their attorneys to keep abreast on the status of their particular VCF claims. Examples of the new features implemented by the myVCF portal include the following:
- Claimants will be able to electronically sign documents within the VCF claimant portal;
- Attorneys and law firms will have the ability to track their clients’ claims to ensure all steps have been completed;
- Should there be any questions or concerns about the claims process, claimants and attorneys will have access to online support;
- Easier-to-follow instructions and checklists that help to ensure claimants have provided all required documentation; and
- Confirmation that a claimant’s submission is complete before the claims process can continue.
The automated portal system, which has been adopted by other government programs, aims to reduce the possibility that a claimant (or the claimant’s lawyer) will make a mistake when filing a claim by providing supporting documentation. Moreover, the ability to access real time information about an individual’s VCF claim helps to speed up the claims process. For example, if a claimant’s submission is missing required information (such as medical records), the VCF claimant portal provides a means for claimants to: (1) understand why his or her submission is being rejected, and (2) know what steps to take to cure any errors.
When Will the myVCF Portal Be Available?
The myVCF portal is still in the early stages of implementation, so the portal will not be fully launched until early 2024. It is important, however, that individuals who either have pending VCF claims or who’ll be filing future claims are aware that a new system is on the horizon. Until then, the VCF and 9/11 lawyers are working to ensure current VCF claims data is accurate and that all pending VCF claims are in good order. (This simply means that a claimant has submitted all required documentation to move to the next step of the claims process.)
Contact the 9/11 Lawyers of Pitta & Baione LLP Today for a Free Consultation
Have you been exposed to 9/11 toxins, or have you lost a loved one to a 9/11-related health condition? If so, you may be eligible to file a claim with a VCF to seek compensation. To find out how the claims process works, and to determine whether you are eligible, you should consider speaking with a 9/11 lawyer to discuss your situation.
At Pitta & Baione LLP, we dedicate our careers to meeting the needs of clients who have been affected by the 9/11 attacks. We advocate on behalf of our clients’ rights to ensure they receive their deserved compensation through the VCF. To schedule a free consultation, contact our office today by calling (844) 596-1288 or by submitting a case inquirythrough our website.