A fire that covered nearly 2,500 acres of Camp Pendleton lead to the evacuation of more than 330 residents who may now have to file claims for per diem and smoke or fire damages to their homes or property.
According to the Staff Judge Advocate claims website, service members trying to recover from property damage caused by activities of the federal government that was not incident to service may do so in accordance with the Military Claims Act. Civilians may also recover under this act for damages resulting from non-combat activity of a peculiarly military nature.
Home owners insurance or vehicle insurance can cover the damages and be repaid by the government. Going through the government directly can cause a two to three month wait for payments.
“The most common claims due to the fire are smoke damage, vehicle damage and hotel stays due to the mass evacuation of O’Neill Heights Housing,” said Cpl. Christopher Hibbard, a civil law clerk with the civil law office.
Residents will not be responsible for any damages to their homes due to the fire or smoke, according to Hibbard.
“Lincoln Military or Hunt Military will cover all damages that were a direct cause of the fire,” said Hibbard.
To file under the MCA, a claim must be presented in writing on Standard Form 95 within two years of the incident.
“It is faster for residents to make claims through their insurance companies,” said Hibbard.
“The most important thing for residents to remember when making a claim is to save all of their receipts, and properly fill out all of the forms,” said Hibbard.
Completed claim forms and the supporting documentation of claims may be submitted to the Claims and Investigations Section, Room 240, Building 1160, or mailed to the following address:
Legal Services Support Section
Attn: Civil Law
Camp Pendleton, CA 92055-5010
When filing for personal property damage residents should fill out the following forms:
· Direct Deposit Form
· DD Form 1842
· DD Form 1844
· DD Form 1844
· Insurance Affidavit
The forms and instructions can be found at: http://www.pendleton.marines.mil/StaffAgencies/StaffJudgeAdvocate/ClaimsForeclosures.aspx
For more information, please call the claims section at (760) 725 5154 or contact Cpl. Christopher Hibbard at Christopher.firstname.lastname@example.org