A recently released study confirms that receiving disability benefits from the VA related to Gulf War associated illnesses requires patience and perseverance!
Veterans who served in Southwest Asia during the Persian Gulf War, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Operation Iraqi Freedom and who suffer from certain qualifying chronic disabilities are entitled to presumptive service connection. To be eligible for presumptive service connection under 38 U.S.C. §1117, a veteran must (1) qualify as a Persian Gulf War veteran; (2) suffer from a qualifying chronic disability; and (3) the qualifying disability must have become manifest during active military service Southwest Asia or to a degree of 10% at any time since the veteran’s return from active duty in Southwest Asia.
A recent study performed by the Government Accountability Office shows that only 17% of claims filed by veterans seeking VA disability benefits related to Gulf War associated illnesses are approved by the VA. In addition to the lower approval rate, the claims are also taking longer to approve. The study found that veterans filing Gulf War associated claims wait about 4 months longer to hear back from the VA than do veterans filing other types of disability claims.
If you are a Gulf War veteran fighting with the VA about a disability benefits claim, contact the lawyers at Pashler & Devereaux LLP to see if we can help.