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Author Topic: Help for DOE Occupational Illness  (Read 4732 times)

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Offline Rennhack

Help for DOE Occupational Illness
« on: May 09, 2016, 10:43 »
In 2009 I mentioned that some of my friends from Battelle in the 90’s tested positive for Beryllium and CBD. I also know some folks from Rocky Flats that have had issues as well.  Many of them have sought out help, and have received it.

If you or someone you know developed a lung condition or a cancer after working at a DOE Site, there may help and compensation available to you. In 2000, Congress enacted a program for sick nuclear workers, called Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act. (EEOICPA)

If you are a qualified worker, and you have a covered illness, this program can compensate you up to $400,000, and it pays the costs of all medical treatment related to that condition for life.

Recently, I met a NukeWorker advocate who helps workers receive their EEOICPA benefits.

She is experienced in handling cancer and chronic lung disease cases, as well as "Survivor" claims for the spouses and children of deceased workers.  We have several people listed in our fallen section that I believe this could help their survivors.

I would like to recommend her as a resource to anyone who has questions about or would like help with EEOICPA. Her contact information is below, or you can contact her via this forum (her handle is NukeWorker advocate).
 
Below is a message she asked me to share with to you.
 
Thank you Michael for the introduction.
My name is Erin Hagle. I am the granddaughter of a Los Alamos Protective Force Officer, who passed away from Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma.
Working together with the Law Office of Liam Griffin in Ruidoso, NM, I prepare claims for nuclear workers from across the United States.
My primary mission is to reach as many sick workers as possible, to ensure they receive the financial help, medical coverage, and support they are due. I have seen many times how claimants’ lives are instantly made happier when they have the money to provide an inheritance for their children and grandchildren; and the stress that is lifted when they realize they don’t need to spend another dime paying for illnesses caused by their work.  Even when a person has already died from their radiation exposure, these benefits may provide their family with financial relief, as they did for my grandmother.
If you feel EEOICPA medical coverage and compensation could help you or someone you know, this is the time to submit a claim for it. For workers, one reason to begin the process now is that your medical expenses are only reimbursed from the date you submit your claim, onward (once your condition is accepted).
As an advocate, my role is to shorten and ease the claims process, and increase the success rate for workers and their families. Advocates' services are completely contingency-based, and workers do not owe any fee until they have received their compensation. For those workers who wish to pursue this process on their own, I'm glad to answer any questions you may have.
 
Contact me via phone at (505) 906 - 6853
Or
On NukeWorker.com's forum (NukeWorker advocate)
 
Thank you.
-Erin Hagle

F.A.Q.s Regarding the Program:
 
Q. What type of employment qualifies me for the EEOICPA benefits?
A. In order to qualify for benefits, you must have worked for "Department of Energy (DOE), its contractors or subcontractors, atomic weapons employers" or "designated beryllium vendors". If you worked at certain work Sites during specified time periods (referred to as "SEC"), this will make it easier for DOL to accept your claim, but is not the only factor in determining your eligibility.
 
Q. What if I already tried to submit a claim and was denied?
A. A denial does not always disqualify you from receiving your EEOICPA benefits. An advocate can help you overturn a denial.
 
Q. What lung conditions are approvable and how do I know if I have one?
A. There are many lung conditions for which you can receive medical coverage through EEOICPA. Two conditions, resulting from exposures to Silica or Beryllium, are compensable for a settlement if you are approved. A battery of medical tests including PFT (breathing test), CPET (Exercise Test), Chest X-ray, and BeLPT are helpful in diagnosing occupational lung conditions. You may want to participate in the Former Worker Medical Screening Program, which provides these tests at no cost.
 

Offline NukeWorker Advocate

Re: Help for DOE Occupational Illness
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2016, 02:02 »
Further Q and A:

Q. How do I know if my nuclear work Site(s) are eligible in this Program?

A. It is easy to find out if your work Site qualifies as a covered Department of Energy (DOE), contractor or subcontractor, atomic weapons employer, or designated beryllium vendor facility. Simply visit the website of the Office of Environment, Health, Safety, and Security. Click or copy and paste this link into your web browser, and you may conduct a search of facilities by name, by location, or by keyword:

https://ehss.energy.gov/Search/Facility/findfacility.aspx

If you don't see your facility's name in the alphabetical list, make sure you do a search by location or keyword. For example, the Fernald Site shows up as Feed Materials Production Center (FMPC) in the Facilities By Name list.

Q. How much does it cost to have an advocate work for me on my claim?


A. The short answer is: it costs you nothing unless your advocate wins your claim, and you get your compensation. If your claim is successful, you owe only a small percentage of said compensation.

The work an advocate does is contingency-based, which means an advocate receives no payment for their work until your claim is approved.

Whether your advocate is a layperson or a lawyer, you do not owe your advocate any fee unless he/she succeeds in getting your claim approved. The program dictates that should your claim be approved, the advocate (whether lawyer or layperson) may only charge you a small percentage for their work. That fee is either 2% or 10%, depending on the difficulty of the case and the level of work involved. In any case, this fee is a fraction of what a lawyer would charge to recover a similar amount of compensation outside of the EEOICPA Program.

The attorney with whom I work is my general counsel. He is available to advise me with any legal matters pertaining to claims, and has legal expertise if claims should ever require a hearing. His counsel does not affect the advocacy fee.

Q. I am sick with what I believe is an occupational illness and I want to do my claim alone, without the help of an advocate. Where should I start?

A. If you are sick, you should submit your claim as soon as possible. Basically, you need to do 3 things to begin. DOL's resource centers and many established advocacy offices will have you do these three things to begin your claim:

1. Fill out an EE-1 Form and EE-3 Form (links below).
2. Submit these forms in a fax or mail in to your appropriate Department of Labor EEOICPA branch office.
3. Request your DOL file (including DAR) from your appropriate DOL office.

Include both your full name and social security number or case ID number on any correspondence you send to DOL.

EE-1 Form: https://www.dol.gov/owcp/energy/regs/compliance/EEOICPForms/ee-1.pdf
EE-3 Form: https://www.dol.gov/owcp/energy/regs/compliance/EEOICPForms/ee-3.pdf

Q. How do I know which DOL office I should submit my claim to?

A. Make a note of whichever qualified nuclear site you worked at most recently, and the state it was in. This will determine which of the four nationwide offices you will correspond with for your claim. Click on the link below, or copy and paste it into your web browser.

https://www.dol.gov/owcp/energy/regs/compliance/law/jurisdictionmap.htm

Click on the state where your most recent qualified work site was/is, and you will see the contact information for your appropriate district office (Seattle, Denver, Cleveland, or Jacksonville).

*You are not required to use an advocate to do your claim. Advocates exist to help workers achieve favorable decisions in a fraction of the time, by building a very strong case for you - especially if you have an occupational lung condition as opposed to a cancer. Please see the following link for statistics on the success rate of claims in this program.   https://www.dol.gov/owcp/energy/regs/compliance/weeklystats.htm.



Hope these resources help workers further, and feel free to contact me with any questions you have.

Erin Hagle
NukeWorkerAdvocate
(505) 906-6853
« Last Edit: May 26, 2016, 09:18 by NukeWorker Advocate »

 


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