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Turley Hansen Sponsors 9/11 Health Watch Annual Dinner

(L-R) Daniel J. Hansen, Rep. Peter King, Troy G. Rosasco

(L-R) Daniel J. Hansen, Rep. Peter King, Troy G. Rosasco

9/11 Health Watch is one of the most important 9/11 Advocacy groups in the United States. 9/11 Health Watch makes sure the government keeps its promises to everyone harmed by the 9/11 attacks.  Under the fearless leadership of  Executive Director Ben Chevat, the organization monitors  health care and compensation programs to make sure everyone who’s injured or sick because of September 11th gets the help they need and deserve.

Turley Hansen & Partners, LLP was honored to be one of the financial supporters of this vital organization at its annual fundraiser this past Tuesday with a $10,000 gift.  That’s how important 9/11 Health Watch is to victims and her families.  

This year 9/11 Health Watch honored U.S. Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Charles Schumer and Representatives Carolyn Maloney, Jerrold Nadler, and Peter King – the five original co-sponsors of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Reauthorization Act. In addition, Sheila Birnbaum, former Special Master for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund was honored.

“The five leaders we’re honoring tonight are a powerful rejoinder to those who believe government can’t make a difference in people’s lives. Indeed, without the leadership of Senators Gillibrand and Schumer and Representatives Maloney, Nadler, and King, many heroes and survivors of the 9/11 attacks would not be alive today,” said Suzy Ballantyne  a member of 9/11 Health Watch’s Board of Directors. “9/11 Health Watch will continue to support federal 9/11 aid programs and advocate for everyone affected by the attacks. We’re dedicated to making sure our government delivers on its long term commitment to the health and well-being of 9/11 first responders, survivors, and their families. ”

It was a great night and the attorneys at Turley Hansen saw many of our brave clients there. One of my favorites is a fellow U.S. Air Force veteran like myself who is now fighting 9/11 related pancreatic cancer. He looks great and made the rounds of the dinner better than some of the politicians!

I was so surprised and humbled when he took his own Air Force American flag lapel pin off his jacket and put it on mine. This is the character of so many of the September 11th heroes I speak to every day. They inspire all of us to work harder on their claims.

God bless all September 11th victims and 9/11 Health Watch! Next stop – the fight for reauthorization of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund for another 75 years to coincide with the timeline of World Trade Center Health Program.

Turley Hansen will be proud to support the new fight. See you there.




9/11 Victim Compensation Fund Appeals: What You Need to Know


You have a right to file a 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund Appeal if you disagree with a decision of the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCF). For example, you may disagree with how the VCF calculated your award and ask for an increase in monetary compensation.  Or you may disagree that the VCF found your proof lacking to establish “eligibility” for any award whatsoever.

Filing an Appeal

When you receive the letter from the VCF with your eligibility or compensation decision, it will include an “appeal form”.  If you have a 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund attorney, you should talk to the attorney  immediately to discuss any potential need for a 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund appeal. To appeal the decision on your claim, you must complete and return the appeal form in its entirety within 30 days of the date of the decision letter.

If you appeal, the VCF will send you a letter with your assigned hearing date and time. Hearings are held in a non-adversarial manner.  This means that the hearing is informal. The goal of the hearing is to understand why you disagree with the Special Master’s original decision.

Although you will be required to testify under oath, you will not be put in a “witness box” and subjected to “cross-examination”, like a regular court of law. Hearings rarely last more than about one hour.

Your hearing will be conducted by the Special Master or a Hearing Officer appointed by her office. These Hearing Officers are highly qualified individuals who have been trained for 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund  proceedings. The objective of the hearing is to give you a chance to present information or evidence that you believe is necessary to support your appeal.

If you are represented by our office, one of our 9/11 lawyers will attend the hearing with you. We will present witnesses, if necessary, including expert witnesses.  We do not allow our paralegals to represent you at hearings. If you have a 9/11-related cancer, we will fight to make sure you obtain every penny you deserve.

Turley Hansen offers a “Free Second Opinion” service for claimants who might be unhappy with their 9/11 VCF decision, even if they were represented initially by another law firm. We recently spotted an error from another 9/11 law firm and we were able to increase our client’s award by over $800,000! 

 If you have questions about appealing a decision from the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, please call us at 1-855-WTC-INFO (1-855-982-4636). 

What 9/11 Victims Need to Know About Suing Saudi Arabia under JASTA

JASTA_Saudi Arabia

Many of our 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund clients have called in recent days about suing the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in addition to filing their 9/11 Victim Compensation claim.

Let’s be clear! At this point, no 9/11 lawyer can tell you with any certainty that you have a good 9/11 Saudi Arabia case under the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA), which was passed by Congress last week. No lawyer- no law firm – period! End of story.

Unfortunately, a number of our clients have received solicitation emails from various law firms telling them that they are already representing them in the Saudi Arabia lawsuit.

Read last weekend’s NY Post article about the now infamous lawyer Paul Napoli recruiting clients for a 9/11 lawsuit against Saudi Arabia here.  

However, the 9/11 Victim Compensation regulations specifically permit  a lawsuit like the 9/11 Saudi Arabia one contemplated without any impact on a 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund claim. You should speak now to your current 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund attorney or another experienced and respectable 9/11 attorney so you can prepare to join any possible lawsuit down the road.

Unlike the administrative program of 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, the hurdles of proving in federal court that the Kingdom Of Saudi Arabia was responsible for the 9/11 attacks are much higher.

In addition, there are significant questions on who will be able to join the lawsuit. Will it only be victims and families affected directly on 9/11? Or will 9/11 first responders and all those now eligible for benefits under the Zadroga Reauthorization Act, such as those who now have 9/11 related cancers, be allowed to sue also?

The honest answer is that no lawyer truly knows now how JASTA will play out for 9/11 victims. Will Congress revise the law after the Presidential election, as it currently being discussed? Currently, JASTA allows the federal government to intervene and postpone the lawsuit while they try to resolve the issue diplomatically. Even if victims were to win a lawsuit against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, would the Kingdom ever actually pay?

Turley Hansen & Partners is currently helping our own clients and other non-represented 9/11 victims protect their legal rights to a lawsuit against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

We have sent all our current clients a new retainer allowing us to explore a JASTA lawsuit on their behalf so their rights are protected.  

If you have questions about protecting your legal rights under the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA), please feel free to call us at 1-855-WTC-INFO. Thank you.

9/11 FDNY Hero Tim Brown Appears on Telecare TV to Remember 15th Anniversary of WTC Attacks


FDNY hero Tim Brown will appear on Telecare TV tomorrow, September 7, 2016, with 9/11 Victim Compensation Attorney Troy Rosasco to remember the 15th Anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

The program, Family Comes First, will appear on Telecare (Cablevision channels 29 and 137, Time Warner channels 106 (Manhattan), 471 (Queens) or Verizon FiOS TV channel 296) on Wednesday, September 7, 2016 at 9:30 am. The episode will also re-air on Wednesday at 10:30 pm, Thursday at 1:30 pm and Monday at 1:30 pm.

Tim Brown is a retired , decorated 20-year FDNY veteran.  On 9/11 he was with the Office of Emergency Management and was inside both towers that morning before they collapsed.  Tim Brown survived, but more than 90 of his friends –  including his best friend, FDNY Capt. Terence Hatton of Rescue Co. 1 –  died that day.  

Before the towers collapsed, Capt. Hatton and Tim embraced one last time in the Twin Towers. Then Capt. Hatton began his ascent up the tower. Tim never saw him again. During the panic in the World Trade Center, Tim helped coordinate response with emergency officials. When the building began to fall, he escaped into a nearby hotel.

The TV show, which highlights Tim’s harrowing story told in his own humble words, is worthwhile tuning  in to watch as we approach the 15th anniversary of September 11th. Since 9/11, Tim has been a leader in protecting the memory of all those lost on 9/11 at Ground Zero. He has also fought tirelessly for compensation and medical care for all 9/11 first responders and survivors with cancer.

9/11 Victim Compensation Fund attorney, Troy Rosasco of Turley Hansen & Partners, LLP,  will also speak on the new Zadroga Reauthorization Act and recent developments at the Fund under new Special Master, Rupa Bhattacharyya.

Family Comes First, the two-time Telly award winning show, is co-hosted by  Long Island Elder Law Attorney Vincent J. Russo & Victoria Roberts Drogin.   Knowing the importance of the upcoming anniversary, they were privileged to produce this show with Telecare to honor those first responders who fought to save the lives of so many.




“9/11: Fifteen Years Later” Documentary to Air on CNN


Ahead of the 15th anniversary of the attacks on America, CNN has announced that it will broadcast an updated version of the Emmy award winning 9/11 real-time documentary, “9/11” with limited commercial interruption, on September 11th, 2016 at both 8:00 pm and 11:00 pm. The new two-hour film version is called ‘9/11: Fifteen Years Later’

Thank you CNN for remembering!

Award-winning actor, producer, and founder of The Leary Firefighters FoundationDenis Leary will introduce the new anniversary edition of the film, reflecting upon the heroism of the firefighters who responded that day to the World Trade Center towers.

From the site of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum in New York City that commemorates the fallen, including 343 members of the New York City Fire Department, Leary will recall the bravery and emotions of the events in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001, and beyond.

Thank you Denis Leary for remembering!

Many consider this documentary – which everyone should be warned – contains graphic, disturbing images and language – the definitive documentary of the actual attacks and devastation on 9/11.

As disturbing as this documentary  film is, I think many of us need to watch this film. I first saw the original version in 2002. I promise you – you will “Never Forget” 9/11 if you watch this film. It will also put our continuing fight against groups like ISIS in a much clearer perspective. 

The original film was directed by brothers Gédéon and Jules Naudet, French-born filmmakers,and by retired Manhattan firefighter James Hanlon. The Naudets and Hanlon were on hand at the Duane Street New York Fire Department house on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, to film the training of a rookie New York firefighter, when American Airlines Flight 11 crashed into Tower One of the World Trade Center.  One of the most indelible images of that fateful moment of impact was filmed by Naudet, and first aired that evening on CNN.

Thank you to the Naudet Brothers and firefighter James Hanlon for producing the definitive documentary which will help us all to “Never Forget”!

The brothers continued filming the heroic rescue efforts of the first responders throughout that fateful day.  The film is a gripping, evocative, minute-by-minute account of that harrowing day through the lens of these filmmakers.

Please consider watching this special 9/11 documentary presentation on 9/11/2016 at 8:00 pm.  It will help us all “Never Forget”.  Thanks. 

Dan Hansen &  Troy Rosasco


9/11 Attorneys Sponsor Long Island WTC Health Program Picnic

Stony Brook WTC Health Program Picnic 2016

The September 11th Victim Compensation Fund law firm of Turley Hansen was pleased to sponsor the Long Island 9/11 World Trade Center Health Clinic annual picnic last Saturday, August 13, 2016. Despite the heat index approaching 100 degrees, the turn out of both first responders and their families was overwhelming.

The picnic was organized by the the always professional staff at the Stony Brook Health WTC Health Program Clinic in Islandia. The Deer Park Fire Department graciously hosted the event.  Music, food and fun was had by all. Given the blistering heat, Turley Hansen luckily chose to donate hundreds of water bottles to the event!

Stony Brook is one of only five Clinical Centers of Excellence (CCE’s) in the New York Metropolitan region for both responders and survivors. The Center covers initial health evaluations, yearly medical monitoring exams (including lung cancer scans), and medical and/or mental health treatment for specific certified WTC-related health conditions. See the newly updated (August 2016) WTC Health Program Clinical Center of Excellence Member Handbook here.

The Stony Brook Long Island WTC Health Program actually runs two clinics on Long Island – one in Islandia and one in Mineola at Winthrop University Hospital. See the contact info below:

State University of New York, Stony Brook
Telephone: (631) 855-1200
Two Locations

Suffolk County (Main Clinic)
1345 Motor Parkway, 1st Floor
Islandia, NY 11749

Mineola (Contact Main Clinic First)
173 Mineola Blvd, Suite 302
Mineola, NY 11501

Unlike the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, the World Trade Center Health Program provides benefits for psychological conditions such as Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), depression and anxiety. These health benefits include individual counseling, support groups and psychiatric medications, as needed. All health benefits are 100% free with no co-pays or deductibles.

The recent passage of the James Zadroga Reauthorization Act added $3.5 billion in additional funds to treat 9/11 responders and survivors until the year 2090. The WTC Health Program treats all 9/11 covered illness, including over 70 separate cancers. (See the list of covered WTC 9/11 cancers here).

As always, Turley Hansen is glad to lend a helping hand to the entire 9/11 community.


Special Report: 9/11 Cancers Triple Since 2014 Due to Ground Zero Dust


As reported in the New York Post today, September 11th related cancers have tripled since January 2014.  The long term health effects of the World Trade Center dust, fumes and toxins continues to grow. Now, almost 15 years since the attack, every state in America has at least one resident sick with a 9/11 related illness. It appears the pain is long from over. The evil brought to our shores that day by radical terrorists continues to plague our nation.

As of June 30, 2016, over 5,400 WTC first responders and others who lived, worked or went to school in downtown Manhattan – below Canal Street -have come down with 9/11 related cancers due to breathing the toxic dust and fumes from Ground Zero. At least 1,140 have died from WTC cancers. And the federal government told them the air was safe – right!

According to Dr. Michael Crane, Medical Director of the WTC Health Program at Mt. Sinai Hospital in Manhattan, new 9/11-linked cancers are being certified between 10-15 times per week!  At that pace, his medical center alone will certify over 500 911 cancers in the next 12 months.  The program monitors more than 48,000 police officers, construction workers, volunteer firefighters, utility workers and others who selflessly at Ground Zero. The New York City Fire Department has their own medical program and monitors another 16,000. Thank God Congress passed the James Zadroga Reauthorization Act last December.

The 9/11 Zadroga Reauthorization Act provides lifetime monitoring and 100% healthcare coverage for victims with 911 cancers through the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP).  You can enroll and get screened for cancer, no matter where you live in the nation, by calling 1-888-982-4748. The new Zadroga Act also provides compensation to victims through the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF). The 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund recently re-opened for new claims. You can find the new VCF Claim form here.

Unfortunately, our office is also seeing a large increase in 9/11 first responders, cleanup workers, downtown residents and workers (below Canal Street) calling about 9/11 Zadroga Act eligibility.

Reminder: If you or a loved one were present in Lower Manhattan below Canal Street anytime between September 11th 2001  and May 30th 2002, and have been diagnosed with cancer, you can call us at 1-855-WTC-INFO to see if you are eligible for free health care and compensation under the 9/11 Zadroga Act.

September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Re- Opens for New Claims


New 9?11 Victim Compensation Fund Special Master Rupa Bhattacharyya

New 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund Special  Master Rupa Bhattacharyya

Lot’s of good news came from the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) today.

First, after an over seven month suspension following the passage of the new 9/11 Zadroga Reauthorization Act, the Victim Compensation Fund is now officially accepting new claims. We will have a lot of happy clients!

The Fund released today a new single “claim form” for both “eligibility” and “compensation” determinations. Previously, 9/11 claimants or their attorneys had to complete two separate forms and wait for a determination on “eligibility” prior to submitting a form claiming “compensation”.  See the hard copy version of the new 16 page 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund Claim form here.  The new single comprehensive claim form should speed the processing of claims and do away with one extra hurdle of appeal.

Turley Hansen will start filing new client claims pending since last December beginning tomorrow. Four of our paralegals participated in a special training session at the Department of Justice offices today to learn about the new claim form and online filing procedures. See the important New 9/11 Victim Compensation Document Checklist that you should follow before filing any claim here.

Second, the new 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund Special Master, Rupa Bhattacharyya, introduced herself in a special message.  Her message, filled with both compassion and professionalism,  gives us every impression that she will be more than able to fill the big shoes left by former Special Master Sheila Birnbaum.  See some of her comments below:

As I assume my responsibilities as Special Master for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (“VCF”), I do so with great humility and deep appreciation for the significant progress the VCF team has made under Sheila Birnbaum’s steady leadership since the passage of the Zadroga Act in 2010 and its reauthorization in December 2015. I also come into the position with an acute awareness of the urgency of continuing that work so that claims are processed promptly and efficiently in order to provide full compensation to those who have suffered as a result of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. I want to thank Sheila for her compassion and dedication to designing, implementing and operating a program for the last five years that is transparent and fair and attuned to the needs and concerns of our claimants. As we move through this transition period, I have made clear to the VCF staff that our number one priority is to process and pay claims with thoughtful consideration and without unnecessary delay. There will be no slowdown while I get up to speed.

I think we have a winner!

If you have questions about the “New 9/11 Victim Compensation Claim Form” , a 9/11 cancer compensation claim or where your previously filed claim may be in the process given the reopening of the VCF, call one of our 9/11 attorneys  at 1-855-WTC-INFO (1-855-982-4636).

9/11 First Responder NYPD Detective Joe Sweeney Speaks at Democratic National Convention

Great speech last night at the Democratic National Convention by 9/11 First Responder – NYPD Detective Joe Sweeney!

In direct and heartfelt words, Detective Sweeney told a national audience how he felt about then Senator Clinton’s unwavering support for the health of 9/11 first responders and other victims.   Regardless of whether you are a Democrat or a Republican and who you might vote for in November, Joe spoke as an American first.  He stood there as a shining example of the many humble and selfless law enforcement officers who protect us across this country every day.  Way to go Joe!

In addition to Detective Sweeney, 9/11 victim Lauren Manning – who was severely burned over 80% of her body- spoke about the impact of that horrible day. Congressman Joe Crowley of Queens, New York spoke about the passage of the 9/11 Zadroga Act establishing the Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) and the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP).

Detective Sweeney was an NYPD officer and detective for over 21 years serving his city and his country.  Both his proudest and saddest day on the job was 9/11/2001 when he was called to work in the smoke and the ash and search first for survivors – then for remains. He spoke of all the first responders – including firefighters, construction workers, utility workers, emergency workers and volunteers – who came together to help in yet another world crisis (caused by “radical Islamic terrorism”Yes – I have no problem saying those words!)

Joe correctly pointed out that it was our own federal government that told the first responders recklessly that the air around Ground Zero was safe to breath.  Unfortunately, we now have the continued health consequences and premature deaths of first responders to prove how wrong the government was.  As we all know now,  the air around the WTC crash site was a “smoldering toxic soup” like never seen before or since, and our first responders are now paying the price. 

In the dangerous world in which we now live, it is nice to see that our brave first responders not only get the national recognition they deserve – but the compensation and health benefits they deserve.