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VA reverses decision and awards disability to veteran

Veterans in Texas might be interested to hear about an unprecedented decision that the VA made regarding one retired veteran's compensation. A retired veteran who served on the U.S. 123K aircrafts received Agent Orange disability compensation, which is significant for other veterans who served on the aircrafts. Granted, other veterans have gained Agent Orange compensation, but not without having to appeal denials to the Board of Veterans' Appeals. The VA had initially denied this man's claim, but then reversed its decision.

The man is a retired lieutenant colonel who has three types of cancer: prostrate, rib and pelvic. He claimed that his conditions may have been due to him coming in contact with the Agent Orange herbicide while he was aboard U.S. 123K aircrafts. Ultimately, the man was awarded his VA benefits after the VA admitted that they did believe he had been exposed to an herbicide, but they had doubts about which one he had been exposed to. After initially denying his claim, they reversed their decision and resolved the doubts in his favor, admitting that it may have been Agent Orange that he had been exposed to.

This man's case is reportedly the first time that a veteran from this group has received the compensation without having to take his case to the BVA. The VA's decision offers hope to other veterans who are seeking compensation for postwar exposure to the Agent Orange toxic defoliant.

Lawyers might be able to assist veterans who might have developed conditions related to their military service secure compensation for their conditions. A lawyer might be able to help them prepare their claims and present evidence to validate them.

Source: Fox News, "VA does about-face, gives Agent Orange disability benefit to Air Force veteran", August 11, 2013

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