The Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) has released its Quarterly Report outlining the status of September 11th claims, including statistics on total awards made as well as progress made on pending claims. Special Master Rupa Bhattacharyya summarized the program statistics as of June 30, 2017, as follows:
- The VCF has rendered over 16,800 compensation determinations, including initial awards on new claims, and revised awards on claims with amendments or appeals.
- These determinations total over $2.8 billion awarded to VCF claimants, exceeding the $2.775 billion originally appropriated when the Zadroga Act was passed in 2011, and awards are now being made out of the appropriated funds added when Congress reauthorized the VCF in December 2015.
- Substantial progress is being made on the oldest claims. As of the end of 2016, nearly 2,500 claims were pending where compensation had been submitted in 2015 or earlier. As of today, nearly 65 percent of those claims have been determined. At the same time, of the nearly 800 compensation amendments that were submitted in 2015 or earlier, more than 30 percent have been determined.
- VCF remains on track to decide the remainder of the 2015 claims, whether new claims or amendments, before the end of this year (assuming all information necessary to complete review has been submitted by the claimant or third party entities).
- Under the VCF prioritization plan, which determines the order in which claims are reviewed based on the date the compensation claim or amendment was submitted, claims and amendments submitted in early to mid-2015 are currently receiving award determinations. Compensation submissions from mid-to-late 2015 are under review, and compensation submissions from late 2015 and those submitted post-Reauthorization but prior to the re-opening of the new claimant portal in August 2016, will come under review soon.
- VCF is continuing efforts to increase transparency about the claim review process, and earlier this year, updated the Claim Status Definitions that are visible on the claimant portal to provide better information about where a claim is in the review process.
- VCF is also dealing with claims submitted in 2016 and 2017. In all, over 2,800 compensation claims are currently pending where eligibility has been approved. Another more than 4,500 claims are awaiting eligibility review prior to beginning compensation review. And, there are 2,400 pending compensation amendments.
In comparing June 2017 versus June 2016, VCF has handled claims as follows:
- As of June 2017, there were 28,609 eligibility claims forms received versus 22,870 in June 2016.
- As of June 2017, there were 21,448 eligibility decisions made and 16,942 decisions approved versus 20,129 decisions made and 14,761 decisions approved as of June 2016.
The full Quarterly Report is available here.
The deadline for filing a VCF claim is December 18, 2020. If you need assistance with submitting your claim, reach out to Sullivan Papain Block McGrath Coffinas & Cannavo at (800) 962-9954 and via SPBMC’s contact page.