The amounts awarded by the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) attempt to address the wide range of physical, emotional, and financial losses suffered by victims, first responders, recovery workers, and their families. One of the most tangible impacts of a 9/11-related illness is the inability to work and the loss of wages as a result. A large percentage of VCF awards are for such “economic” losses, not only for wages already lost but also for the loss of future earnings as a result of a disability, inability to work, or limited ability to work due to 9/11-related injuries or illnesses.
Qualifying for an Award of Future Earnings
Awards for future lost wages are not based on speculation or guesswork; a claim for future earnings must be thoroughly prepared and proven by records and documents, and there can be a difference in hundreds of thousands of dollars between a properly prepared future earnings claim and an inadequate one.
To qualify for an economic loss award for loss of future earnings/benefits, you must first show that you have a permanent, partial, or total occupational disability based on an eligible 9/11-related physical injury. If another government agency, such as the Social Security Administration or a workers’ compensation board, has already determined that you have a disability, the VCF will generally accept such a determination. If the governmental agency determines that the cause of disability is a condition that the VCF has found eligible, then the disability determination will provide a basis for making an award for future loss of earnings/benefits. The VCF may also accept a determination of disability made by a private insurer or a treating physician if they are sufficiently detailed as to the effect of the VCF eligible condition.
It is important to understand that even if you been found to be disabled as described above, there are still very detailed documentation requirements that you must comply with in order for the VCF to find you eligible to receive compensation for lost earnings.
How Are Amounts of Future Earnings Determined?
Determining the amount of an award for future benefits – and the proof you need to submit to support such a claim – is even more complicated and involved than determining eligibility for such an award. It involves complex calculations that take into consideration numerous factors including:
- Age and compensable income
- After-tax income
- Employer-provided benefits
- Work-life expectancy
- Inflation and growth rates
- Risk of unemployment
- Reduction in personal consumption by deceased claimants
- Present value of projected future earnings
The experienced and committed 9/11 attorneys at Turley, Hansen & Rosasco have assisted thousands of 9/11 victims and responders with their VCF compensation claims, including the submission of the strongest possible claims for future lost earnings. If you have questions or need help with your 9/11 compensation claims and claims for future earnings, please call us today at 1-855-WTC-INFO (1-855-982-4636) or fill out our contact form to arrange for your free 9/11 claim evaluation. We look forward to assisting you.