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Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Claims

The water supply at Camp Lejeune, in North Carolina, was found to be contaminated between the years 1953 and 1987, over one million people lived at the camp during this period of time including, active duty and former military service members, families, non-military staff, and others.

If you were stationed or visited Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987, you may have been exposed to contaminated drinking water which has been known to cause cancer and other severe illness. A bill provides long-overdue justice to those who were affected, including veterans and their families. If you think you could be among them, we are here to help.

What is the problem at Camp Lejeune?

In the early 1980s, two water-supply systems on the Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in North Carolina were found to be contaminated with the industrial solvents trichloroethylene (TCE) and perchloroethylene (PCE). The water systems were supplied by the Tarawa Terrace and Hadnot Point water treatment plants and served enlisted-family housing, barracks for unmarried service personnel, base administrative offices, schools, and recreational areas.

In 1983, samples taken from these water systems showed high levels of these chemicals and in response to these findings, the Department of Defense began testing all of its installations for contamination.

What exactly is PCE and TCE?

PCE was the primary contaminant found in the wells serving the Tarawa Terrace system. The chemical was used by an off-base dry cleaner, and the groundwater became contaminated with PCE as a result of spills and improper disposal practices. Contamination of the wells from that source is estimated to have begun as early as 1953, the year when dry-cleaning operations began. There were also other on-base sources of contamination in the Tarawa Terrace system that had a smaller impact on the water supply. 

The contamination of the Hadnot Point water supply was more complex and involved multiple sources and multiple contaminants. The primary contaminant found in those wells since monitoring began in the 1980s was TCE. It is likely that multiple sources contributed to the TCE contamination, including on-base spills at industrial sites and leaks from underground storage tanks and drums at dumps and storage lots. The Hadnot Point water-treatment plant began operating in 1943, but no estimates have yet been made of when the contamination began. Wells in both systems that were contaminated in the early 1980s were closed in the period November 1984–May 1985, and the entire Tarawa Terrace water-treatment plant was closed in 1987

What are the symptoms of drinking contaminated water from Camp Lejeune?

More than 1 million people may have been exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, and the full effects of that exposure may not be known for years or even decades. TCE and PCE are known to have toxic effects in animals and in humans, so it is important to understand the scale and extent of exposure that may have occurred. 

Researchers are still working to understand how the exposure may have affected people’s health, however, some conditions have already been linked to water contamination, these include: 

  • Adult leukemia
  • Aplastic anemia and other myelodysplastic syndromes
  • Bladder cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Liver cancer
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Parkinson’s disease

Can I make a claim? 

If you were stationed or visited Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987, you may have been exposed to contaminated drinking water and may be eligible to make a claim if:

  • You visited, lived, worked or resided at Camp Lejeune and have been diagnosed with or died from a serious medical condition related to the exposure. This group includes military personnel, civilians and family members

  • You or a family member were injured or died as a result of developing an illness or disease from exposure to the toxic contamination in the water supply that occurred at Camp Lejeune Marine Corps Base in North Carolina between 1953 and 1987. This group includes military personnel, civilians and family members.

No win, no fee personal injury solicitors

The expression “No win, no fee” is often used in personal injury cases.  It is used as a way of funding a compensation claim where the accident victim does not have the means to pay for the costs involved as the case progresses. 

A number of solicitors are prepared to handle personal injury cases on a “No Win – No Fee” basis but very few are able to offer their clients complete protection if the case is unsuccessful. 

In that event, the client could end up being liable for many thousands of pounds in legal expenses or the case won't be fully investigated and therefore likely to under-settle.

Compensate 'no win, no fee' funding

Digby Brown has its own funding company, Compensate, which provides the funding to allow the case to be fully investigated, employ the best experts surrounding the circumstances of the accident and/or injuries sustained and where and if necessary go to court.

If for whatever reason the case is unsuccessful, Compensate pays all your legal expenses and those of your opponent – you pay nothing

On average our clients receive over 3 times the pre-litigation offer

Because of Compensate funding Digby Brown's success rate is extremely high and on average our clients receive three times the pre-litigation offer.

In the event the case is successful, a small percentage of your damages will be deducted with VAT to pay for this service. The percentage which Compensate will charge depends on the degree of risk involved. We believe that this is the fairest method of giving clients access to justice whilst ensuring their cases are fully investigated, prepared and funded.

Don’t take our word for it, just read many of the court decisions and case studies on our website.

Beware of compensation offers which may be too good

We know you will have seen many adverts offering 100% compensation or telling you that you will not lose any of your compensation, however we believe there are a number of problems with companies that do this.

  • How do they make their money if they don’t charge you anything?
  • If they aren’t taking any money from you, the client, what incentive do they have to ensure you receive the right level of compensation, appropriate to the injuries you have sustained?
  • Fully preparing a case, finding out exactly what happened and what the consequences of your injuries may mean in the long term, is expensive, how do they do this properly?
  • If they aren’t fully preparing these cases will they just accept the first offer they are given on your behalf by the Insurance company?
  • It makes simple business sense, the less work they do the higher their profit margin is - they simply have no incentive to work harder on your behalf.
  • These adverts in the main are from English firms on national television which operates in a different way and therefore wouldn’t apply to a Scottish person.

We know from the many client cases we mandate from other firms of solicitors (in the main at the request of the client who is extremely unsatisfied with the service received for the other firm) that many shortcuts are taken in preparation and that the first offer received is being recommended for acceptance, regardless of the value. 

Getting something for nothing is usually the first sign of poor service.

Correct level of compensation with Digby Brown

Our experience and statistics show time and time again we will achieve the correct level of compensation which will be substantially more than the insurer is initially prepared to offer.

Even after we have deducted our percentage as a success fee you will gain considerably more than you would have achieved using a 100% compensation model.

Contact Digby Brown's personal injury solicitors

We have offices across Scotland in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee, Kirkcaldy, Inverness, Aberdeen and Ayr.

For further information about no win, no fee, or anything else, call us on 0333 200 5925 or fill in our enquiry form below and someone will get back in touch with you.

What are the time limits for making a claim?

The Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 which was signed on August 10, 2022 grants two years or until August 10, 2024, to those who might have been affected by the water contamination. 

However, we always advise that you enquire as soon as possible, this will give us much time as possible to build your case.

How do I prove that I was affected by contaminated water?

We would obtain medical evidence and fund skilled medical experts for opinions to find a link between your time at Camp Lejeune and the condition your loved one or yourself are suffering or have suffered from. 

What is the process of making a Camp Lejeune compensation claim?

We know it can be difficult to find a way forward when you and your loved ones have been impacted, and we want to want to make the process of seeking help as straightforward as possible.  

  1. Simply submit an enquiry form 
  2. Upon receipt of your enquiry, your case will be assessed by specialists at both Digby Brown and a firm of specialist attorneys we work closely with in the United States.
  3. We will then proceed to formally intimate your case in order to achieve a swift settlement at the maximum level of financial compensation possible. 

Both firms are accredited specialists in this area of law and have a track record in obtaining the maximum level of damages you are entitled to in the most time-efficient manner possible. 

Why choose Digby Brown

Mark Gibson, Partner at Digby Brown, is a Law Society of Scotland Accredited specialist in personal injury law. He is also the only Scottish solicitor accredited by APIL as an Accredited Accidents and Illnesses Abroad Specialist. 

Mark is a former Governor of the American Association for Justice which is the main representative body for trial lawyers acting in the area of personal injury in the US. His ongoing membership of the AAJ and their International Practice Section makes him uniquely placed to identify the best and most trusted US specialists to work with on Camp Lejeune cases. 

Mark has also garnered many years of experience working on cross-border issues in “co-counsel” with US firms and acts as a trusted point of contact for the client. He is also a Scottish Board member of the Pan European Organisation of Personal Injury lawyers and his international contacts allow him to draw on expertise in Europe, the US and beyond. 

Mark Gibson

0333 200 5926

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Saturday and Sunday: 12pm - 4pm

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