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If you’ve never filed for VA disability, it can be a daunting task to undertake. Fortunately, filing for your VA disability has never been easier thanks to the newly signed PACT act. The new PACT act allows people that were once not eligible for VA disability to file a claim. The PACT act focuses on people that were exposed to toxins during several wars.
These people include civilian contractors, family members living on base, and other personnel that are not military. Sadly, the PACT act came late for many people that died as a result of Camp Lejeune’s toxic water contamination. For more information about this incident, check this out.
If you or a loved one were exposed to toxic water at Camp Lejeune, don’t be afraid to file for VA disability. Below are some of the steps you need to take to prove your case and get the best disability rating.
Disability for Contaminated Camp Lejeune Water
Gather Medical Paperwork
First and foremost, you’ll need to gather all of your medical paperwork to help make your case strong. If you were exposed to toxic water at Camp Lejeune, the VA recognizes the following diseases as being a direct result of your exposure:
- Bladder cancer
- Breast cancer
- Esophageal cancer
- Female infertility
- Hepatic steatosis
- Kidney cancer
- Lung cancer
- Multiple myeloma
- Myelodysplastic syndromes
- Neurobehavioral effects
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Renal toxicity
If you’ve suffered from any of these diseases, it means that you might be eligible to receive VA disability. You need to gather all paperwork and bills that show the treatment you received, and that the issue occurred after you were exposed to drinking water from Camp Lejeune.
The drinking water at Camp Lejeune was thought to be toxic after 1953 and before 1987. If you were exposed to the water for more than 30 days between this time period, you should also provide paperwork to support this claim.
Gather Discharge Paperwork
The VA will not grant you disability if you received a dishonorable discharge. A dishonorable discharge is usually due to a criminal offense or other reason. It’s best to upgrade your discharge status (if possible) before seeking disability from the VA.
Alternatively, you can also file a civil lawsuit against the VA. Any earnings you win from the VA lawsuit will be offset by the disability received.
Another helpful tool for your VA claim includes statements. These statements are especially helpful for people that don’t have any physical signs of their illness, but that still struggle to find peace.
For instance, if the water at Camp Lejeune made you infertile or suffer through miscarriages, you can still receive compensation for this ailment. Statements from family members can also support the claim that this issue caused you significant depression.
File ASAP and Seek Legal Help
You must file certain paperwork such as an “intent to file” and other paperwork as soon as possible. People have 2 years after the PACT act was signed to file for their VA disability claims for Camp Lejeune water exposure.