Deadline looms for 9/11 fund
U.S. money to aid terror victims’ kin has Dec. 22  cutoff
The Journal News
December 14, 2003
The average award for families of those killed stood at $1.7 million tax free as of Thursday, according to the fund’s Web site. The award is generally determined based on a victim’s lifetime earning potential.
The deadline for filing with the fund is Dec. 22.
There is no cap on the amount of money approved by Congress, with an estimated $5.1 billion expected to be paid out to the families. The fund guarantees families of those killed at least $250,000 for pain and suffering, and $100,000 for each dependent family member. Those who file give up their rights to sue.
The fund guarantees money without forcing people to prove negligence. Just as in a civil court case, the awards will take into consideration financial issues, and the amount of insurance each family has or the money received from private charitable funds.
Bill Groner, a lawyer in Westchester, said there had been a surge of families filing applications. The fund’s special master, Kenneth Feinberg, has agreed to take basic information such as names, addresses and occupations, and allow families more time to complete the complicated financial part.
“I am happy there are many people who were on the fence and have decided to pursue what appears to be the strongest remedy for them,” Groner said. “Many people are still mourning and unable to move forward. I think that’s sad that they must lose out on this opportunity for them and their families.”