The Solution

The Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2021 is a federal remedy to provide victims and their families with long-needed judicial relief of suffering. This bill will allow anyone who resided or worked at the base or was otherwise exposed to its tainted water to file a claim against the government and seek appropriate relief for harm incurred due to the water contamination. It is important to note that passage of this important bill will ensure access to justice through the courts, but anyone who files a case must win on its merits. The legislation would cover individuals not already compensated; they must prove their case so there is not strict liability. Additionally, the budget impact is limited by an amortization provision; there are limits on attorney’s fees; and it will not affect the budget of the VA or military since it will come out of the judgement fund, which is a nonbudgeted item.

Veterans and their families make great sacrifices for our country and it is our nation’s responsibility to take care of them while they serve and after they transition to civilian life. The federal government has failed the victims at Camp Lejeune like Janey and Jerry Ensminger and thousands of others for far too long. We urge you to support the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2021, so victims and their families can finally exercise their right to seek long-overdue justice through the court system.

GET INVOLVED

Take action now!

If you or someone you love has been affected or has passed away from Camp Lejeune water contamination, contact our team to share your story and help us push Congress to pass the H.R.2192 – Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2021—a bill that will allow victims to seek justice for themselves and their families. We’ll also send regular updates about the legislation so you can be ready to make your claim if the bill is passed.

READ THE BILL, H.R. 2192

To provide for recovery by individuals who were stationed, lived, or worked at Camp Lejeune, for certain actions of omissions by the United States.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the “Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2021”.

SEC. 2. FEDERAL CAUSE OF ACTION RELATING TO WATER AT CAMP LEJEUNE.

(a) In General.—An individual, including a veteran, or the legal representative of such an individual, who resided, worked, or was otherwise exposed (including in utero exposure) for not less than 30 days during the period beginning August 1, 1953, and ending December 31, 1987, to water at Camp Lejeune that was supplied by the United States or on its behalf may bring an action in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina to obtain appropriate relief for harm which—

(1) was caused by exposure to the water;

(2) was associated with exposure to the water;

(3) was linked to exposure to the water; or

(4) the exposure to the water increased the likelihood of such harm.

(b) Burden And Standard Of Proof.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—The burden of proof shall be on the party filing the action to show one or more relationship between the water and the harm described in paragraphs (1) through (4) of subsection (a) by a preponderance of the evidence.

(2) USE OF STUDIES.—A study conducted on humans or animals, or from an epidemiological study, which ruled out chance and bias with reasonable confidence and which concluded, with sufficient evidence, that exposure to the water described in subsection (a) is one possible cause of the harm, shall be sufficient to satisfy the burden of proof described under paragraph (1).

(c) Exclusive Jurisdiction And Venue.—The district court for the Eastern District of North Carolina shall have exclusive jurisdiction over any action under this section, and shall be the exclusive venue for such an action. Nothing in this subsection shall impair any party’s right to a trial by jury.

(d) Exclusive Remedy.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—An individual who brings an action under this section for an injury, including a latent disease, may not thereafter bring a tort action pursuant to any other law against the United States for such harm.

(2) NO EFFECT ON DISABILITY BENEFITS.—Any award under this section shall have not impede or limit the individual’s continued or future entitlement to disability awards, payments, or benefits under any Veteran’s Administration program.

(e) Immunity Limitation.—The United States may not assert any claim to immunity in an action under this section which would otherwise be available under section 2680(a) of title 28, United States Code.

(f) No Punitive Damages.—Punitive damages may not be awarded in any action under this Act.

(g) Disposition By Federal Agency Required.—An individual may not bring an action under this section prior to complying with section 2675 of title 28, United States Code.

(h) Attorney Fees.—Attorney fees for services provided to an individual seeking a remedy under this section shall be in accordance with section 2678 of title 28, United States Code.

(i) Exception For Combatant Activities.—This section does not apply to any claim or action arising out of the combatant activities of the Armed Forces.

(j) Period For Filing.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—The statute of limitations for an action under this section is the later of—

(A) 2 years from the date on which the harm occurred or was discovered, whichever is later; or

(B) 180 days from the date on which the claim is denied under section 2675 of title 28, United States Code.

(2) SPECIAL RULE.—In the case of harm which was discovered prior to the date of the enactment of this section, the statute of limitations is the later of—

(A) 2 years after the date of the enactment of this section; or

(B) 180 days from the date on which the claim is denied under section 2675 of title 28, United States Code.

(3) STATUTE OF REPOSE.—Any applicable statute of repose does not apply to claims under this Act.

(k) Effective Date.—This Act shall apply to—

(1) a claim arising on or after the date of the enactment of this Act; and

(2) a claim arising before the date of the enactment of this Act, if filed within two years of the date of enactment.

MEDIA

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