To receive disability benefits from the United States Department of Veteran Affairs, veterans must establish that their disability is connected to their service. Although, in some exceptional cases, the VA will assume that your condition is service-connected. The condition the veteran assumes is connected to their military service, and you can read it on the VA presumptive list given by VA.
Conditions That Qualify for a Presumptive Service Connection
Veterans diagnosed with chronic disease can apply for a presumptive service connection after one year of their retirement from their service. Some of the chronic diseases are:
Veterans recently diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) can apply for a presumptive service connection soon after being discharged.
Additionally, there are some specific rules for previous war prisoners for recent veterans. Vietnam veterans, Gulf war veterans and Atomic veterans. Like Vietnam veterans can receive a presumptive service connection if they have Type2 diabetes because of Agent Orange exposure. Veterans with conditions linked to a set period can be identified with a disability at any time. For this, veterans are not required to wait one year to apply like those who have served recently.
There is a VA presumptive list on the VA website which you can download that states different circumstances qualifying for a service-connected disability.
If You Qualify For Veterans Disability Benefits, Your Job Is Only Half Done
Although, getting a service connected to disability is 50 % of the work. You are still required to give the VA proper evidence showing the intensity of your condition to get a proper disability rating. Ratings vary from 0% to 100%. The higher percentage of disability you receive, you will earn additional monthly compensation. In some cases, veterans with conditions limiting their ability to work may qualify for Total Disability Individual Unemployability (TDIU) benefits.
Presumptive conditions for former POWs
Previous POWs are in a different situation regarding presumptive conditions present in VA presumptive list because the problems don’t have to surface within one year of retirement.
Regardless of all this, all of them can get benefits if they suffer from any diseases stated below:
- heart attack or any other disease
- dysthymic disorder
- post-traumatic osteoarthritis
In addition, POWs in captivity for 30 days or greater can receive compensation for conditions like:
- chronic dysentery
- irritable bowel syndrome
- peptic ulcer disease
- cirrhosis of the liver
The least rating the POW needs to get benefits is 10%, and the VA must believe that disability caused is service-connected.
Radiation exposure during service
Military veterans exposed to radiation while on duty can get VA benefits. The eligibility for such conditions highly depends on the place where the veteran served.
POWs near Nagasaki or Hiroshima during World War 2 or anyone serving in areas near the bombing sites during an operation can also get VA benefits.
Conditions of veterans when they get exposed to radiation are:
The small intestine, liver, bone, pharynx, pancreas, breast, salivary gland, thyroid, brain, colon cancer etc.
All these conditions are excluded from any time limit, and the 10 percent disability rating isn’t in effect.
If you were exposed to radiation and now you are diagnosed with cancer, there is a greater chance that you will receive benefits from VA.
Vietnam Veterans and Agent Orange
If a Veteran of Vietnam has any of the below-mentioned conditions, the VA will assume that the disability was due to exposure to Agent Orange.
- Acute and Subacute Peripheral Neuropathy
- Hodgkin’s Disease
- Prostate Cancer
- Soft-tissue Sarcoma
- Multiple Myeloma
- Respiratory Cancers
- Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
- Diabetes (Type II)
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Ischemic Heart Disease
- Hairy Cell Leukemia
- AL Amyloidosis
- Porphyria Cutanea Tarda
Gulf War Illness
In 2009 recognized, three presumptive Gulf War illness recognized three presumptive Gulf Wars illnesses were. Besides this, Gulf War Veterans also benefit from the VA for chronic diseases from medically unexplained illnesses. Like skin disease, migraine, pain in joints or muscle, respiratory and gastrointestinal issues etc. Gulf War veterans with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, also called Lou Gehrig’s Disease, can also receive benefits from VA.
Veterans exposed to radiation from fallout, atomic weapons and nuclear reactors, such as during World War 2, have presumptive conditions. There are almost 12 different types of cancer that can be linked to exposure to radiation. We recommend that any veteran exposed to radiation and later gets diagnosed with cancer apply for Disability Compensation.