Gardberg & Kemmerly, P.C. Attorneys at Law

Veterans Disability Benefits Archives

Agent Orange Effects Seen in Grandchildren of Vietnam War Veterans

Grandchildren of Vietnam Veterans are being born with birth defects and heart problems that could be connected to exposure to Agent Orange. Agent Orange was a powerful poison sprayed by the military to wipe out vegetation, particularly in Vietnam during the war. The military sprayed more than 20 million gallons of Agent Orange in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia to deny the enemy food sources and cover.

CAVC Defines "Substantial Gainful Employment"

On March 14, 2019, the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims issued a decision in Rey v. Wilkie to define substantial gainful employment (SGA). This is a relevant case for anyone who has a pending Total Disability based on Individual Unemployability (TDIU) claim. Previously, the Board of Veterans Appeals did not have a definition of the term SGA, and therefore, it was impossible to know if the veteran was actually able to perform SGA.

Current Status of U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit Procopio Decision

On January 29, 2019, a 9-2 decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit overturned past court opinions and stated that the Department of Veterans Affairs cannot deny disability benefits to Vietnam veterans who claim exposure to cancer-causing chemical defoliants merely because those veterans served in the waters off the coastline of Vietnam and not inland. This is a major victory for "blue water" Navy veterans who have fought for years over these denials.

3M Military Combat Arms Earplug Lawsuit

The Minnesota-based 3M Company, a defense contractor, sold its dual-ended Combat Arms Earplugs, Version 2, to the military without disclosing defects that decreased the effectiveness of the hearing protection. 3M violated the False Claims Act by selling or causing to be sold defective 3M ear plugs to the U.S. military. 3M decided to settle in order to avoid a lengthy legal battle. These defective earplugs were standard-issue for U.S. military members from 2003 to 2015. The defective ear plugs may have caused significant hearing loss or tinnitus in military Veterans.

VA Must Pay Disability Benefits to "Blue Water" Vietnam Veterans

On January 29, 2019, a 9-2 decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit overturned past court opinions and stated that the Department of Veterans Affairs cannot deny disability benefits to Vietnam veterans who claim exposure to cancer-causing chemical defoliants merely because those veterans served in the waters off the coastline of Vietnam and not inland. This is a major victory for "blue water" Navy veterans who have fought for years over these denials.

Holidays can be Difficult for Those Filing for Disability

The holidays can be especially taxing for those without income. Many already struggle with providing every day food and medications for themselves or loved ones. With the holidays, comes a time, when family and friends, especially children, expect gifts that some just may not be able to afford. This is especially true for people filing claims for Social Security Disability and facing lengthy wait times on their claims.

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