How to File a Claim for Agent Orange Exposure?
You cannot file a VA disability claim for Agent Orange exposure itself, because the fact that you were exposed to this dangerous herbicide does not make you eligible for compensation. Instead, you must suffer from a medical condition associated with Agent Orange exposure. VA grants disability benefits based on your medical condition, not on the circumstances that led to the condition.
If you have a disability caused by Agent Orange, you can apply for and receive benefits. Specifically, if you have certain medical conditions due to Agent Orange exposure, you are entitled to presumptive service connection. A VA disability lawyer from Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD may be able to help you with the process. Call 800-544-9144 for a free case evaluation with a member of our team.
Eligibility for VA Disability for Agent Orange Exposure
You can receive VA disability benefits for any disabling medical conditions that you developed as a result of your military service. It does not have to involve Agent Orange exposure.
However, if you meet certain eligibility requirements, you may be eligible for presumptive service connection for your condition because of your exposure to Agent Orange. This makes it much easier to receive benefits, as the VA does not require you to prove your military service caused your condition.
To be entitled to a presumption of exposure for Agent Orange, you must meet at least one of the following criteria:
- Service in Vietnam between January 9, 1962 and May 7, 1975.
- Service in or near the Korean Demilitarized Zone between September 1, 1967 and August 31, 1971.
- In the inland waterways or coastal waters of Vietnam between January 9, 1962 and May 7, 1975. during the Vietnam War.
- Service on C-123 planes after the Vietnam War.
Medical Conditions Recognized by VA as Connected to Agent Orange Exposure
Not all medical conditions lead to a presumptive service connection based on Agent Orange exposure. The VA grants benefits based on Agent Orange exposure only when you have a condition it recognizes as being caused by the herbicide.
As of 2018, the list of conditions eligible for a presumptive service connection due to Agent Orange exposure includes:
- AL Amyloidosis
- Chronic B-cell leukemias
- Type 2 diabetes
- Hodgkin’s disease
- Ischemic heart disease
- Multiple myeloma
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Parkinson’s disease
- Peripheral neuropathy
- Porphyria Cutanea Tarda
- Prostate cancer
- Respiratory cancers
- Soft tissue sarcomas
If your condition does not appear on this list, you can still apply for VA disability based on Agent Orange exposure. However, you must offer the following to establish a service connection:
- Evidence of a diagnosis of a condition considered disabling by the VA.
- Evidence of exposure to Agent Orange
- Evidence of a link between Agent Orange exposure and the medical condition being claimed.
Evidence Needed to File a VA Disability Claim
Assuming your medical condition appears on the list of ailments that VA associates with Agent Orange exposure, you can receive disability benefits by supplying the following evidence with your claim:
- Evidence that you received a diagnosis of a medical condition that appears on the list.
- Evidence that you served in a capacity listed above, exposing you to Agent Orange.
- Evidence that your condition began within any applicable deadlines (your lawyer can help you determine which deadlines, if any, apply to your claim).
How to Apply
There are three ways to apply for VA disability benefits based on Agent Orange exposure:
- Online, using the VA.gov website.
- Over the phone, with the help of a VA representative or agent.
- In person at a regional VA office.
A VA disability lawyer can help you complete your application and gather the supporting documentation you need to build the strongest possible claim.
Free Case Evaluation with a Team Member at the Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD Disability Law Firm
The VA disability lawyers at Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD may be able to help you apply for VA disability benefits. For a free case evaluation with a member of our staff, call 800-544-9144 today.
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