If you have a spouse, parent, or another person in your family who has been exposed to dangerous levels of radiation at an atomic weapon test site, then you might want to educate yourself a little more about the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act and the benefits that it grants. For example, some people don't know about survivors' benefits that are available under the RECA and therefore don't end up receiving the compensation that they are entitled to. These are a few signs that you might qualify for these survivors' benefits; just make sure that you consult with a professional for help.
Your Loved One Was Exposed to Dangerous Levels of Radiation
First of all, the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA) was put in place to ensure that individuals who were exposed to dangerous levels of radiation—while working with uranium, working on an atomic weapon test site, or living near one of these test sites—were properly compensated. If you were not exposed to these dangerous levels of radiation yourself, the only possible way that you might qualify for RECA survivors' benefits is if your relative was exposed.
Your Loved One Has Passed Away
In order to qualify for survivors' benefits from the RECA, your loved one must have passed away. Be aware that you might still qualify for survivors' benefits even if your loved one passed away for a reason that was not related to their radiation exposure, since this is something that many people get confused about.
You're Closely Related to the Deceased
In order to qualify for survivors' benefits, you must be a close relative to the deceased individual who would have been eligible for compensation under the RECA. For example, spouses or children are often paid these benefits.
Your Loved One Never Received a Compensation Payment
If your loved one received a compensation payment for their radiation exposure while they were still alive, you should know that you will not qualify for survivors' benefits. After all, each person who has been exposed to radiation is limited to a one-time compensation payout for the exposure. If your loved one never received their payout, however, then someone in their family is entitled to receive the benefits on their behalf. If you aren't sure of whether or not your loved one ever received this payment, there are caseworkers and lawyers out there who can help you look into this—such as the National Cancer Benefits Center.