VA Rule Revision on Lejeune Published

UPDATED 3/16/2017:

As of March 14, the recent VA Rule to establish presumptive status for 8 illnesses for military service members exposed at Lejeune went into effect.

This does not cover service members with an illness not listed (must continue to go through the regular claims process), civilian workers, families, or children.

What is most curious is some of the reporting that we’ve found out there so far. Are new media reports sharing accurate information? One article we found gives us concerns. In the article, the following limitation is mentioned:

VA officials will accept applications from any service member who spent at least 30 cumulative days at the base, whether that service was on active-duty, reserve or National Guard status. Veterans have a year to file the benefits claims, and if approved will receive payouts from their date of filing.

Here’s the link to the story – Civilian Exposure Newslink: VA finalizes disability benefits plans for Camp Lejeune veterans

We are not aware of a source for this time limit. We’ve checked the VA Register copy of the rule, the VA Lejeune website and claims pages, etc. Is there a time limit to establish presumptive claims under this new VA Rule? Is there a deadline or limited window of time available to you to file claims after all?

We’ll find out. Stay tuned.


 

Original Story 2/27/2017

In recent months, the VA has solicited feedback and concerns as they amend their rules for Camp Lejeune toxic groundwater contamination and claims assistance. Specifically, the new rule added 8 illnesses as “presumptive”.  After a period of comment, the rule was recently published in mid-January and is now available in the Federal Register.

FAQ: What Is “PRESUMPTIVE” Service Connection?
VA presumes that specific disabilities diagnosed in certain veterans were caused by their military service. VA does this because of the unique circumstances of their military service. If one of these conditions is diagnosed in a Veteran in one of these groups, VA presumes that the circumstances of his/her service caused the condition, and disability compensation can be awarded.

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Civilian Exposure

Civilian Exposure is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization/public charity working to Build Awareness, Accountability and Assistance for Civilians Exposed to Camp Lejeune Water Contamination and all citizens exposed to any toxic contamination aboard all U.S. military installations. The effort continues to inform civilian employees and others affected by contamination to receive both the guidance and the justice they deserve.

About the Founder
A 20-year veteran of media, marketing, non-profits and entrepreneurship, Gavin P. Smith leads Civilian Exposure, a non-profit assisting civilians and veterans exposed to U.S. military contamination; the Keta Foundation, a collaborative foundation dedicated to mitigating modern slavery through economic improvement projects in Africa; and Gavin Consulting, a network of virtual experts serving global clients; He is also a former member of the CDC/ATSDR Camp Lejeune Community Assistance Panel. Mr. Smith holds a Master of Global Management with distinction (Beta Gamma Sigma) from Thunderbird School of Global Management, an MBA from The College of William & Mary Mason School of Business and a BA in History from Wake Forest University.

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