The Veterans Affairs Department has expanded the list of ships exposed to Agent Orange, thereby broadening the amount of veterans with disability qualifying conditions who could apply for veterans benefits.
Ships added to the list were in Vietnam between between January 9, 1962 and May 7, 1975. Veterans who served aboard these ships during that time may be eligible to receive VA disability compensation for 14 medical conditions associated with exposure to Agent Orange. A list of new ships exposed to Agent Orange are available at publichealth.va.gov.
According to VA’s website, Agent Orange is a mix of herbicides used during Vietnam. Millions of gallons of Agent Orange was sprayed across trees and vegetation to deny cover to enemy forces. Diseases associated with Agent Orange include multiple forms of cancer, Parkinson’s Disease and Acute and Subacute Peripheral Neuropathy, among others.
The “presumption” rule comes into effect for soldiers with disability qualifying conditions exposed to Agent Orange. This means veterans don’t have to prove a medical link between their illness and service, the VA said, adding that the department presumes exposure for any veteran who served within Vietnam or on its inland waterways.
It is our opinion that any Vietnam veteran who served aboard a watercraft in or near Vietnam may have been exposed to Agent Orange and or other herbicides employed by the U.S. armed forces. If the veteran is ill from one of the deceases associated with the use of herbicides, they should consider filing a claim with the VA immediately. The law offices of Harold W. Conick, & Associates is available to assist the veteran with such claim.