How to Claim VA Disability after Burn Pit Exposure
Like all VA disability claims, a burn pit exposure claim begins with a veteran disability benefits application. The application is filed with the VA and must be supported by evidence that:
- You have a disabling medical condition, and
- The condition is connected to your military service
The best way to start an application for VA disability benefits is to file your claim online. You may be able to expedite the process by filing a fully developed claim. In short, that means that you submit all of your evidence of disability and service connection along with your application. By doing so, though you’ll have to certify that there is no additional information needed to decide your claim. So if you choose to use this process, it’s important to be very sure that your application package is complete and you have provided sufficient evidence to prove both your disability and the service connection.
Presumptive Conditions and Burn Pit Exposure
A veteran seeking disability benefits for conditions related to burn pit exposure may have two significant advantages. Second, the VA recognizes a long list of conditions as presumptively connected to burn pit exposure for those veterans who were exposed. First, the VA presumes burn pit exposure for those who served in certain locations.
You may be required to submit evidence, particularly to establish your medical condition and the resulting disability. And, not every condition that may impact a veteran who was exposed to burn pits is presumptive. That means you may have to do more to establish a service connection. Though many veterans who are disabled due to burn pit exposure will have the benefit of both a presumption of exposure.
Possible Pitfalls with Burn Pit Exposure Claims
If you have a disabling condition you believe is attributable to burn pit exposure, it’s important to make sure you don’t overlook other conditions or other possible causes when you apply for veteran disability benefits. For example, veterans who served in Operation Iraqi Freedom or Operation New Dawn who are suffering respiratory conditions may have been impacted by other service-connected exposures.
If you are planning to pursue a claim relating to burn pit exposure, it is in your best interest to fully educate yourself about possible secondary conditions and other relevant exposures you may have experienced during your service.
Talk to a VA Disability Benefits Advocate
At Veterans Help Group, we put our experience to work simplifying the veteran disability benefits application and appeals processes. You can learn more about how we can help by contacting or calling us at (855) 855-8992 right now.
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