The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently reported a follow up to their 2010 announcement on three new conditions stemming from Agent Orange exposure to be listed as immediate consideration for veterans’ disability benefits. Vietnam veterans who suffer from ischemic heart disease, Parkinson’s disease, and several chronic B-cell leukemias are now presumed to have been exposed to the toxic herbicides used during the Vietnam War.
This amendment to the VA’s disability considerations stemmed from the Nehmer v. U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs case in California’s Northern District Court. Since the addition of the new conditions, the review of nearly 230,000 “Nehmer” cases has taken place, resulting in over 150,000 claims to be adjudicated.
With the bulk of the Agent Orange claim reviews over, VA Secretary Eric K. Shinseki has announced that as his department wraps up the remaining 500 or so cases that will benefit survivors of deceased Vietnam veterans, their manpower can now focus on helping the regular veterans’ disability claims backlog.
A task force of 1,200 VA employees that have been working on the Nehmer reviews will now be refocused to help decrease the general claim backlog and help the VA reach its goal of claims reaching completion in 125 days with a 98% accuracy rating.
Vietnam veterans who have developed any of the three conditions recently approved for immediate consideration can file their claim with the VA’s fast track program. Qualifying for the special expedited consideration can be difficult without the right evidence, but a veterans’ disability attorney can help.
If you are a disabled veteran who has been denied disability compensation or have not yet applied for benefits from the VA, a South Florida disability attorney from Veterans Help Group is ready to help. To learn if you are entitled to certain programs and benefits contact our veteran’s disability rights firm today – 1-855-855-8992.