THE PACT ACT AND YOUR VA BENEFITS Alan Valleau, MSW, VA Accredited Claims Agent

On August 10, 2022, President Biden signed the PACT Act. This Act expands VA health care and benefit for Veterans exposed to burn pits, Agent Orange, and other toxic substances. For veterans of the Vietnam-Era, Gulf War-Era, and Post 9/11. The PACT Act adds to the list of health conditions that the VA assumes (or “presumes”) are caused by exposure to these substances. This law helps the VA clarify and provide generations of Veterans - and their survivors with the care and benefits they have earned and deserve. In addition, the VA announces presumptive conditions for Camp Lejeune Veterans who meet qualifiers. The VA determined that to be eligible for a presumptive service-connection, Veterans must have served at Camp Lejeune for at least 30 days between August 1, 1953, to December 31, 1987, and later developed one of the eight following conditions:

• Adult Leukemia
• Aplastic anemia and other Myelodysplastic syndromes
• Bladder Cancer
• Liver Cancer
• Multiple Myeloma
• Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
• Parkinson’s Disease

Veterans eligible for presumptive service-connection include active duty, former Reservists and National Guard members, all who have served in Camp Lejeune in the specified time. Also, these members must be discharged on conditions other than dishonorable. Let me give you an example from a client I have. In 2008, in a military hospital, the client was diagnosed with diabetes Mellitus (DM) and bilateral neuropathy in the lower extremities, a disease caught from Exposure from Agent Orange. I originally filed for DM and Neuropathy brought about from AOE in 2014 for this veteran. He was in Ubon, Thailand from 1968 to 1969. He was an Air Traffic Controller stationed at a Royal Thai Air Force base. The outer perimeter of Ubon Air Force base was sprayed with Agent Orange. The VA reviewed his claim and determined that only the dog handlers, MPs assigned to the gate and soldiers on guard duty along the perimeter were the only ones eligible for compensation for AOE and the other diseases. Apparently, the VA didn’t think the wind would carry the spay or mist beyond the perimeter line. Well, I digress. At any rate, his claim was denied. I could not file again until I obtained new and relevant information and evidence.

VETERANS BENEFIT CONNECTION, LLC Alan Valleau, MSW, VA Accredited Claims Agent 734-612-9899 | 8230 Ronda Drive, Ste 1 Canton MI 48187


At last, in 2021, I got some recent material and facts. I appealed for the veteran at that time. Again, he was denied. In any case, just after August 10, 2022, when the Pact Act was signed into law, I appealed again for the veteran. The VA conceded and considered, not only the perimeter area but all the areas that the wind blows on the base. No matter what their military occupation or where they were located on the base, they were exposed. He was finally approved and will receive retro-active pay back to 2014. Also, the veteran will receive a monthly compensation. The passing of the PACT ACT in 2022 will finally expand these benefits for veterans with toxic exposure that were previously not accepted by the VA.


• Expands and extends eligibility for VA health care for Veterans with toxic exposures
• Adds more than 20 new presumptive conditions for burn-pit and other toxic exposures
• Adds more presumptive-exposure locations for Agent Orange and radiations.
• Requires VA to provide a toxic exposure screening to every Veteran enrolled in VA health care
• Helps VA improve research, staff education, and treatment related to toxic exposures