RECA PROGRAM OVERVIEW
The U.S. Congress established the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA) in 1990. The purpose is to provide financial compensation to three groups of people:
- Uranium miners, millers, or haulers who have developed certain cancers or certain respiratory or kidney diseases. To be eligible, you must have been employed for at least one year from January 1, 1942, through December 31, 1971. The compensation amount is $100,000.
- People who were on site during one of approximately 200 atmospheric nuclear weapon tests between 1945 and 1962 and have become sick. The compensation amount is $75,000.
- People who were physically present in certain counties downwind of the Nevada Test Site for at least two years from January 21, 1951, through October 31, 1958. Downwinder counties are in certain parts of Arizona, Nevada, and Utah. These people are eligible if they have been diagnosed with certain cancers. The compensation amount is $50,000.
Uranium workers must have worked in one of these 11 states: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, or Wyoming. To be eligible for compensation, they must have received a diagnosis of primary lung cancer, pneumoconiosis, pulmonary fibrosis, cor pulmonale, or silicosis. Uranium millers and haulers can also qualify if they have been diagnosed with kidney cancer or kidney diseases.
Onsite participants include Pacific test sites, the Nevada test site, the South Atlantic test site, and the Trinity test site.
RECA is administered by the Department of Justice. Uranium workers can qualify for additional compensation and free health benefits from the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program (EEOICPA).
IMPORTANT: RECA has been extended until June 7, 2024!
As of June 7, 2022, President Biden has signed into law a two-year extension to the existing Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA). This extension of the existing Act does not expand eligibility criteria, but does extend by two years the time to file under the current rules of the program.
You can continue to make your voice heard by asking your House and Senate members to support legislation to further expand RECA eligibility to include all affected downwinders as well as post-1971 uranium mine workers.
You can reach your house and senate member via these numbers:
House: 202.225.3121 Senate: 202.224.3121