On January 2, 2011, President Obama signed into law the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010 (P.L. 111-347) (Zadroga Act). Title II of the Zadroga Act reactivates the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund of 2001 that operated from 2001-2004 and requires a Special Master, appointed by the Attorney General, to provide compensation for any individual (or a personal representative of a deceased individual) who suffered physical harm or was killed as a result of the terrorist-related aircraft crashes of September 11, 2001 or the debris removal efforts that took place in the immediate aftermath of those crashes.

On May 18, 2011, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that Sheila L. Birnbaum will head the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund program. On August 31, 2011, the Special Master published the Final Rule for the operation of the VCF in the Federal Register.

Title I of the Zadroga Act created the World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program, which is operated by NIOSH. For more information on the WTC Health Program, please click here. For information on the differences between the VCF and the Health Program, see FAQ 1.6.

Law & Final Rule

Please find additional documents related to the Victim Compensation Fund below.


Air Transportation Safety and System Stabilization Act - Public Law 107-42, September 22, 2001 (PDF)

James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010 (P.L. 111-347) (Zadroga Act) (PDF)

Public Law 107-134, Victims of Terrorism Relief Act of 2001 January 23, 2002 (PDF)

Final Rule

Final Rule: 2011 Victim Compensation Fund (PDF)

Sheila Birnbaum Sheila Birnbaum, a life-long New Yorker, has decades of experience resolving complicated litigation. She gained recognition for her work mediating a settlement of $500 million for 92 families of victims of the September 11th terrorist attack on the World Trade Center.

Birnbaum grew up in the Bronx, the daughter of a grocery store owner in Harlem. She attended James Monroe High School and later attended college. She taught the fourth grade at P.S. 62 in the Bronx before attending NYU Law School. Since law school, she has taught at both Fordham Law School and NYU Law School, where she became Associate Dean. She is now a partner at a New York law firm.

Birnbaum has an extensive career in public service. She has served on the New York State Judicial Commission on Minorities; as Executive Director for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit’s Task Force for Racial, Ethnic and Gender Fairness; and as President of the New York Women’s Bar Association.

In 2006, 9/11 victims and corporate defendants jointly asked Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein to appoint Birnbaum to mediate 95 wrongful death and personal injury cases.

Messages from the Special Master