Posted on February 18th, 2020
For decades, Army personnel was kept in the dark about asbestos and the potential health risks it poses until the government issued guidelines to limit asbestos exposure in the 1970s. However, by the time the U.S Armed Forces began removing asbestos products, the damage had been already done.
Until the 1970s, asbestos was used in hundreds of products utilized in the military because of their ability to keep fire and heat under control. Therefore, it was found in everything from military vehicles to ships to the basic construction materials used all over military bases.
The United States Department of Veterans Affairs says that veterans who served in certain occupations have a high risk of developing health problems from asbestos exposure:
VA benefits are now available for veterans affected by asbestos exposure throughout their time of service.
Before is approved, your application for VA disability benefits will go through several steps, and each step can take weeks or longer to complete. There are many things applicants can do to expedite the processing of their claims, including to get connected with a lawyer who specializes in asbestos-related claims. He/she will help you understand each legal step, and manage the entire process so you can focus on your treatment. Eligibility requirements for VA benefits include honorable discharge from the military, evidence of asbestos exposure during military service, and the ability to prove that your disease was a result of asbestos exposure while on duty.
Even the thought of wrestling with the VA to get benefits may seem stressful, tiring, and frustrating. You're already struggling to manage treatments and the life changes that come with your diagnosis. But the process is worth it. For example, a veteran with a spouse and child and a 100 percent disability rating can expect to receive around $3,000 a month in benefits.
Inhalation of asbestos dust or airborne asbestos fibers results in the development of one or more of the following recognized asbestos conditions:
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides financial, medical, and other assistance to veterans with illnesses caused by asbestos exposure. To be eligible for VA benefits, veterans must have actively served full-time as a member of the Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, or Navy, and received an honorable or general discharge. The VA will also need records of asbestos exposure to determine if your disease or disability is directly related to asbestos exposure during time served in the military.
Tips that can help veterans avoid the delay and frustration of denial and have a better chance of obtaining VA benefits from the outset: