Thousands of the New York City firefighters who bravely responded to the 9/11 terrorist attacks have developed at least one health condition linked to exposure to the chemicals in the dust cloud. Tragically, over 200 FDNY members have passed away from cancers or other diseases as a result of breathing in the toxins. Due to the adverse health effects they suffered in connection with their 9/11-related illnesses, many firefighters were left disabled and physically could not continue working.
FDNY members who retired on 3/4 disability as a result of suffering from a 9/11-related cancer or health condition may be entitled to recover the monetary losses they and their family incurred from the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. If you’re an FDNY member who spent time working at Ground Zero, The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. can assist you with filing a 9/11 FDNY disability retirement claim to help ensure you receive compensation for the benefits you’re rightfully entitled.
FDNY Loss of Earnings and Retirement Benefits
If you were an FDNY member who suffered loss of future earnings and retirement benefits in connection with your 9/11-related disability, the VCF may issue an award for your economic loss. The FDNY works with the VCF in providing the necessary documentation to calculate economic loss in connection with a 9/11 FDNY disability retirement claim. The VCF will consider the following in determining compensation:
• Total earnings in the five years prior to retirement
• 1/60th calculation for those who have worked 20 years or more
• Annual retirement salary
• Type of plan
• Date of appointment
• Retirement date
The VCF will also factor in holiday pay, night shift differential pay, and overtime to your total historical earnings.
The spouse and dependents of a firefighter who died as a result of their eligible 9/11-related health condition may also be entitled to compensation from the VCF for loss of earnings and benefits that the victim incurred before their death. Future lost earnings resulting from the victim’s passing from an eligible condition may also be awarded in a wrongful death claim.
FDNY Disability Documentation
In order to be awarded compensation for loss of earnings and pension benefits, you will need to provide proof of your 9/11-related disability to the VCF. The FDNY does not directly provide disability documentation to the VCF — depending on the circumstances under which you’ve been found disabled, additional paperwork concerning your disability determination may need to be submitted.
For FDNY members who retired on either 3/4 disability or regular disability with a VCF eligible condition that wasn’t reclassified under the WTC Bill, the VCF requires a copy of the FDNY Medical Committee Report, the 1-B Medical Board’s recommendation, and a letter from the Board of Trustees of the Fire Department Pension Fund, when you submit a claim. FDNY members who retired on 3/4 Accidental Disability that was later reclassified under the WTC Bill are required to submit the same documents, in addition to both the 1-B Medical Board Recommendation and letter from the Board of Trustees regarding the reclassification proceedings.
Those who retired from the FDNY on a service pension reclassified under the WTC Bill as a 3/4 Accidental Disability, must provide the VCF with the Board of Trustees letter and recommendation from the 1-B Medical Board from the reclassification proceedings.
Contact a VCF Attorney to Assist You With Filing a 9/11 FDNY Disability Retirement Claim
Filing a 9/11 FDNY disability retirement claim with the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund can be a confusing process. It’s best to have the guidance of an experienced attorney who can help ensure you obtain the monetary award you deserve for your loss of earnings and pension benefits. The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. is dedicated to helping eligible FDNY members and their families secure their rightful compensation. Contact us for a consultation.