Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) July 3, 2019 – In January, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled in favor of “Blue Water” veterans. These former members of the Navy who served during the Vietnam War on ships and were exposed to Agent Orange and are now suffering with medical conditions as a result. Until now, they have been denied VA benefits because they were never on the ground in Vietnam.
Many Blue Water vets have conditions that are related to Agent Orange exposure. There are currently seven types of cancer and seven other conditions linked to exposure to the pesticide. The chemical was used during the Vietnam War to kill plant cover and enemy crops.
“Denying Blue Water Navy veterans VA benefits when they are suffering from the long-term health effects of Agent Orange exposure just as badly as veterans who were on the ground is unacceptable,” says James G. Fausone of Legal Help for Veterans. Fausone is a veteran and lead attorney at Legal Help for Veterans, which handles VA benefit eligibility issues.
The Justice Department has until late April to appeal and send the case to the Supreme Court. Acting Secretary of Defense Robert Wilkie has recommended the Justice Department stand down and let the ruling stand.
The VA has historically resisted approving Blue Water veterans for benefits because it claims that the science used to link Agent Orange exposure to the 14 conditions is weak. The cost of these additional benefits could reach 2.5 billion dollars over ten years.
“This should never have been a money issue,” continued Fausone. “Navy Veterans deserve benefits as much as any other soldier during the Vietnam War who was exposed to Agent Orange. It is time for the VA to make it right.”
Legal Help for Veterans is available to help anyone who has been denied VA benefits. Contact the firm at 1-800-693-4800 or visit their website at https://www.legalhelpforveterans.com/.
Legal Help for Veterans, PLLC
41700 West Six Mile Road, Suite 101
Northville, MI 48168
Toll Free Phone: 800.693.4800
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