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How Do Presumptive Conditions Affect A Veteran’s Disability Claim?

As a veteran, understanding your rights and navigating your VA disability claim can be challenging. One factor you should think about is whether you qualify for a presumptive condition. If you’re eligible, you may receive your disability benefits sooner than you think. Learn everything you need to know about these issues and how they can affect your claim.

What Are Presumptive Conditions?

In a typical VA disability case, you must provide evidence that your disability relates to your time in the military. But with a presumptive condition, you don’t need to prove that your situation started or deteriorated because of your service. The VA will automatically give eligible veterans the benefit of the doubt that the medical condition is service related. 

How Does A Presumptive Condition Affect Your Claim?

If you qualify for a presumptive condition, it can simplify the claims process for your case. You won’t need to provide as much evidence as other veterans because the VA accepts that certain conditions can result from specific experiences you went through during service. For example, if you’re a Vietnam War veteran and developed Hodgkin’s disease, the VA would assume it’s related to exposure to Agent Orange while serving there.

Who Qualifies For Presumptive Conditions?

The VA recognizes several groups of veterans as eligible for presumptive conditions. A few of the main ones are:

Camp Lejeune Veterans

For over 30 years, veterans living and working in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, were exposed to contaminated drinking water. The incident caused them to develop serious medical conditions, including:

  • Leukemia
  • Bladder cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Liver cancer
  • Aplastic Anemia and other Myelodysplastic syndromes
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Multiple Melanoma

If you served at Camp Lejeune for 30 days or more between August 1953 and December 1987, the VA would presume that these diseases were caused due to the contaminated water, making you eligible for benefits.

Gulf War And Post 9/11 Veterans

Many Gulf War and Post 9/11 veterans have been exposed to burn pits the military used to quickly eliminate any waste. The toxic fumes had serious health consequences for victims, especially those who were exposed over a long period of time. Some of the eligible disabilities are:

  • Pancreatic cancers
  • Melanoma
  • Brain cancer
  • Emphysema
  • Chronic bronchitis
  • Chronic sinusitis

If you served in the Gulf War or served in combat after 9/11 in Afghanistan or Southwest Asia and were diagnosed with an eligible condition, the VA will presume it’s linked to burn pit exposures as a result of your service.

Former Prisoners Of War (POWs)

POWs are often kept in terrible conditions, which causes several disabilities that may be considered presumptive. Your eligibility will ultimately depend on how long you were in captivity. A few of these conditions include:

  • Psychological disorders
  • Hypertensive heart disease
  • Chronic damage from frostbite
  • Gastrointestinal diseases
  • Nutritional deficiencies

We’re Here To Help You Seek Justice

If you’re a veteran with a presumptive disability, you must understand your rights and how your condition can impact your claim. However, navigating everything alone can be stressful. Our professional veterans’ disability lawyers are here to guide you through the legal process and answer any questions you have about your case. Please contact us online or call us at 855-813-3344 if you have any questions or want to schedule a free consultation today. 

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