Agent Orange was a strategic herbicide used during the Vietnam War to clear leaves and vegetation during military operations. Veterans who experienced Agent Orange exposure started experiencing health problems. Veterans with presumptive diseases of Agent Orange exposure are eligible for VA disability benefits and probably even additional Agent Orange benefits.
Veterans who can’t work due to the effects of Agent Orange exposure may be entitled to more than $3,332.06 per month. VA unemployment benefits are available to assist veterans who can’t work or keep jobs due to service-related health conditions.
It took years for medical conditions caused by Agent Orange exposure during the Vietnam War to be acknowledged by the Veterans Affairs Department. A lot still has to be done for the victims of Agent Orange exposure, since VA still incorrectly denies claims by veterans for VA disability benefits.
Tennessee has highly qualified Agent Orange exposure advocates representing veterans seeking VA benefits for health problems. It’s advisable for a veteran whose claim was denied to seek the services of a disability advocate who can offer guidance through the decision review process. To have a successful decision review process, the disability advocate must prove beyond reasonable doubt some factors listed below:
During the decision review process, your disability advocate will advise you on the importance of proving exposure to Agent Orange during service time. Veterans’ eligibility for VA disability benefits is based on service in a location exposed to Agent Orange. A veteran will meet the in-service requirements if the service was between 9 January 1962 and 7 May 1975 in the following areas:
- In the Republic of Vietnam
- In a U.S. military vessel that functioned in the inland waterways of Vietnam
- In a vessel that moved not more than 12 nautical miles seaward from Vietnam’s waters and Cambodia
Or one of these must have happened:
- Transported, tested, stored, or was allocated other activities involving Agent Orange during the time in military service.
- Assigned as a reservist to a flight, medical duties in a location affected by Agent Orange, e.g., Lockbourne/Rickenbacker Air Force Base in Ohio 1969 to 1986, Westover Air Force Base in Massachusetts 1972 to 1982, and Pittsburgh International Airport in Pennsylvania 1972 to 1982.
If your disability advocate can prove the occurrence of an in-service relating to Agent Orange exposure, you become eligible for VA disability benefits.
During the decision review process, a veteran’s Agent Orange exposure advocate must ensure they have a medical report showing the medical condition diagnosis. However, Agent Orange-related illnesses are classified as presumptive by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Suppose a veteran with a medical condition served in the military in an Agent Orange-exposed area. In that case, the VA assumes the illness is due to a service connection.
Proof of a service connection makes it very easy for veterans to qualify for VA disability benefits. For veterans to be eligible for presumptive VA compensation for Agent Orange exposure, the Agent Orange exposure advocate must show:
- A medical report showing a diagnosis due to exposure to Agent Orange during military service in Vietnam between 9 January 1962 and 7 May 1975.
- Proof the veteran was exposed to Agent Orange in a place, not Vietnam, such as through storing, transporting, or loading harmful herbicides during military service.
Disability Rating Percentage
An Agent Orange exposure advocate in Tennessee will ensure you get the correct disability rating for your diagnosis during the decision review process. VA disability benefits are rewarded according to your disability rating percentage. The VA rating ranges from 0 to 100%, zero being the lowest with no compensation and 100% qualifying for the highest compensation. One is eligible for compensation starting at 10%.
A disability rating is as follows as of 1 December 2021:
- 0% disability rating: $0.00 per month
- 10% disability rating: $152.64 per month
- 20% disability rating: $301.74 per month
- 30% disability rating: $467.39 per month
- 40% disability rating: $673.28 per month
- 50% disability rating: $958.44 per month
- 60% disability rating: $1,214.03 per month
- 70% disability rating: $1,529.95 per month
- 80% disability rating: $1,778.43 per month
- 90% disability rating: $1,998.52 per month
- 100% disability rating: $3,332.06 per month
Note: It’s not a must for a medical condition to be listed in the rating schedule to qualify for VA compensation. CFR 4.20 permits unlisted health problems to be rated through an analogy process under a related injury or illness. Also, total disability is not a requirement for veterans to receive VA benefits. You can be granted VA benefits for partial disability.
Providing the Nexus
Your disability advocate must provide a connection between your current diagnosis and Agent Orange exposure during the decision review process. For a positive connection to be established, a medical professional must assess and confirm the ailment results from exposure to Agent Orange during military service.
VA has established a list of several diseases caused by Agent Orange exposure that are eligible for VA disability compensation. Here are a few examples:
- Bladder cancer
- Chronic B-cell Leukemias
- AL Amyloidosis
- Diabetes Mellitus Type 2
During the decision review process, a veteran who happens to have a medical condition not listed but due to Agent Orange exposure might still qualify for compensation. All you have to do is provide VA with scientific evidence showing your condition results from Agent Orange exposure.
Contact a Tennessee Agent Orange Exposure Advocate for Legal Help
Veterans in service during the Vietnam War who suffered health conditions due to exposure to Agent Orange are eligible for VA disability benefits. It’s prevalent for VA to deny claims unfairly for disability due to Agent Orange exposure. The decision review process can be complicated and take many years to finalize.
After a claim denial, many veterans and their loved ones have no one to turn to for help. However, an Agent Orange exposure advocate here in Tennessee can help. Veterans can enlist their services to ensure they get the VA disability benefits they deserve. Call us to learn more.