Who is Covered by the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund?

Every 9/11 Victim Deserves Compensation

Our 9/11 lawyers aim to provide education, resources, representation – and above all, support – to all 9/11 responders and survivors. Whether or not you have become ill with a 9/11-related condition, we recommend you register with the 9/11 Fund now.

Financial Support for Survivors and Families

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The 9/11 Fund was created to compensate all individualsfirst responders and Downtown area residents and Downtown area students and also all Downtown area workers – who were present in Lower Manhattan on September 11th or any time in the many months after until mid-2002. 

9/11 Victim Compensation Fund Eligibility

If you were present in the NYC “Exposure Zone” (or anywhere the 9/11 debris was handled such as the Fresh Kills Landfill on Staten Island or the debris routes) between September 11, 2001 and May 30, 2002, you may be eligible for a VCF payout. This includes:

  • First Responders
  • Firefighters
  • Police Officers
  • Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs)
  • Cleanup Crews
  • Construction Workers
  • Lower Manhattan Workers
  • Lower Manhattan Residents 
  • Out-of-State Responders
  • Teachers (professors and schoolteachers)
  • Students (college students and local school students)
  • WTC Volunteers (cleanup and recovery, firefighters, EMTs, etc.)
  • Families of 9/11 Victims (families who have lost a loved one due to a 9/11-related illness or injury)

The History of the Victim Compensation Fund

The Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) was first opened in 2001 and then closed in 2004. In 2011, President Obama signed the Zadroga Act into law that reopened the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund and established the World Trade Center Health Program, limiting each of those programs to five years. The VCF was reauthorized once again in December 2015, which extended the VCF to December 18, 2020. On July 29, 2019, after the award payments were slashed by 50% to 70%, the President signed into law H.R.1327 – “Never Forget the Heroes: James Zadroga, Ray Pfeifer, and Luis Alvarez Permanent Authorization of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Act” – once and for all making the 9/11 VCF a permanent law with unlimited funding.

What You Need to Know About VCF Eligibility

  1. You MUST register your claim by the deadline. Each case has a different deadline. See our VCF application deadline information here.
  2. You must prove that you were physically present within the NYC “Exposure Zone,” or along any routes of debris removal, or present at the Pentagon, or Shanksville, PA between September 11, 2001 and May 30, 2002.

The NYC “Exposure Zone”

The NYC “Exposure Zone” is defined as the “area of Lower Manhattan south of Canal Street/East Broadway/Clinton Street.” 

The boundaries for the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund differ from the boundaries for WTC Health Program eligibility. Our firm will also aid in your registration with the WTC Health Program to have your conditions confirmed as being 9/11-related. 

The WTCHP "Exposure Zone"

Additionally, the “Crash Site Area” or “Exposure Zone” under the World Trade Center Health Program is larger than the exposure zone for the VCF. The World Trade Center Health Program “Exposure Zone” includes a section of Downtown Brooklyn (the Brooklyn Heights area) as well as all of Lower Manhattan south of Houston Street. 

As additional 9/11-related cancers and other illnesses have developed over time, the 9/11 cancer list has expanded to include more conditions. If your condition is not on the “covered conditions” list you still may be eligible for compensation. We can help you with these issues.


Some of the most common conditions covered by the VCF today are:


  • Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer
  • Melanoma of the Skin
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Lymphoma
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Kidney Cancer
  • Lung Cancer
  • Female Breast Cancer
  • Thyroid Cancer
  • Colon Cancer
  • Bladder Cancer
  • Myeloma
  • Oropharynx Cancer
  • Rectal Cancer
  • Breast Carcinoma in Situ
  • Mesothelioma
  • Asbestosis
  • Other Rare Cancers
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD)
  • Interstitial Lung Disease
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Reactive Airways Dysfunction Syndrome (RADS)
  • Sleep Apnea
  • Asthma
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)

VCF cancer payouts are among the most frequent of 9/11 claims.

VCF "Covered Conditions"

Helping Survivors Get Covered

Generally, anyone with a “covered illness” who was present in the NYC crash site “Exposure Zone,” the Fresh Kills Landfill on Staten Island, on or near the barges/trucks that moved debris, the NYC Morgue, garages where emergency vehicles were cleaned, or responded to the Pentagon or Shanksville, PA crash sites between the dates of September 11, 2001 and May 30, 2002 may be eligible for free lifetime health care and a financial award. 

Medical benefits and financial awards for 9/11 cancer claims depend on whether all eligibility criteria is satisfied and if the strict registration deadline is met. 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund eligibility and the average VCF payouts vary from case-to-case, ranging from $10,000 to several million dollars.


We Solely Represent First Responders and 9/11 Victims 

To date, Hansen & Rosasco, LLP has recovered more than $200 million in awards from the Victim Compensation Fund for our clients who are suffering from various 9/11-related illnesses. If you were in the vicinity of Ground Zero during the dates listed above, and you believe you are eligible for compensation, call us at 855-982-4636 or fill out a contact form here for a free claim evaluation. Our 9/11 lawyers have been standing with and advocating the entire 9/11 community since 2001. Like thousands of others, you can lean on us through the VCF claims system process.

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