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4 Ways to Prove Exposure to Agent Orange for Thai Vets of Vietnam War.

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Veterans that served in Thailand during Vietnam War often have a difficult time proving exposure to Agent Orange - even though the VA and DoD admit using it prolifically

Here are 4 Ways to Prove Exposure to Agent Orange while serving in Thailand During the Vietnam War

Published in: Law
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4 Ways to Prove Exposure to Agent Orange for Thai Vets of Vietnam War.

  1. 1. attiglawfirm.com http://www.attiglawfirm.com/shoot/agent-orange-thailand-2014/?utm_source=Slideshare&utm_medium=AO Thai&utm_campaign=Social Media Promotion 4 Ways to Prove Agent Orange Thailand Exposure. I've often said that Vietnam era Veterans that were exposed to Agent Orange in Thailand are the "orphans" of Agent Orange claims. (That includes the survivors of these Veterans who also get royally screwed by the VA.) Of all the places where the US has conceded that it doused its own soldiers in Agent Orange, these Veterans have it the worst. Until May 2010, in fact, there was really no reliable path to proving to the VA that you were exposed to Agent Orange while serving at a Royal Thai Air Base in Thailand during the Vietnam War. What Happened in 2010? The VA released a Compensation and Pension Service Bulletin that allowed presumptive service connection of diseases associated with herbicide exposure for Veterans that served on certain Thailand bases during the Vietnam War. Here are the basic "rules" to get the presumption of Agent Orange exposure if you served in Thailand during the Vietnam War: 1) Service at U-Tapao, Ubon, Nahon Phanom, Udorn, Takhli, Korat, and/or Don Muang, between February 28, 1961, and May 7, 1975. 2) You served as a security policeman, patrol dog handler, security police squadron, or "otherwise served near the air base perimeter". Seems easy, right? Not so much. Many Veterans do not fall into the security police or dog handler MOS - and were still exposed to Agent Orange. The VA expects a little more proof from them - though the rule doesn't require it, as a matter of practical reality that's how it works out. 4 Ways to Prove Agent Orange Thailand Exposure. Understand, before you submit evidence, that you will need to submit competent and credible evidence so that the VA can establish a presumption of Agent Orange exposure on a Thailand Air Base on a "facts found basis". With that understanding, here are some ways you can submit to prove you were near the perimeter of a Thai Air base - remember, the more the better. I have not yet seen the VA grant presumptions of Agent Orange exposure based a single statement of a single Veteran. These are not the only ways to skin this cat. Think "outside the box". You don't need to prove you saw, touched, breathed in, drank, or swam in dioxin laden water to prove Agent Orange Thailand Exposure. You need to provide enough evidence to persuade the VA that it was 'at least as likely as not' that your duties put you on the perimeter of a
  2. 2. Thailand Air Base where Agent Orange use is conceded. 1) Produce a copy of your MOS/position description. Pull your actual MOS off your service records, and then google search for a copy of the position description that was in effect during the time of your service in Thailand. Many of these MOS Position Descriptions show that a key performance duty was "patrolling the perimeter" or some such language. 2) If you are fortunate to have performance reviews in your military records, scour them for any language that suggests that part of your job included base security or perimeter duty. One of our clients was commended in his performance appraisal, for the work he did guarding the base commander from snipers while driving him around the perimeter once a week. 3) Add a statement of your own that describes - in as much detail as possible, - the five "W's" and the one "H" of your perimeter duty: who was with you, what you did, when you did it, where you did it, why you did it, and how frequently you did it. One of our clients was an electrician - part of his job involved crawling out to the airstrip to repair lights on the landing strip that were damaged by sniper fire. His Sworn Declaration, coupled with his MOS Position Description, was enough to secure presumptive Agent Orange exposure. 4) Find someone that served on the same base - either at the same time, or with the same MOS, or both. There are enough Thai vets of the Vietnam War out there on Facebook that you shouldn't have too hard a time. We are currently working on one claim, where we have located individuals that served in the same job at the same base - but from a different tour. We believe this will establish the credibility of our client's statement as to his work on the perimeter - even though he never knew the other Veteran that served a couple tours after him. How do you Submit Agent Orange Thailand Exposure Evidence to the VA? Learn How to Master Evidence in your VA Claims with these Bundles of Veterans Law Guidebooks. WHAT you submit to the VA is just as important as HOW you submit it.
  3. 3. Not only does your evidence have to BE competent and credible, it has to LOOK competent and credible. Which are you more likely to hang your hat on, if you are the person responsible for deciding a case: A note written in barely legible handwriting, undated, unsigned saying you worked on the perimeter at NKP Airbase in Thailand? A typed, signed and Sworn Declaration describing the 5 W's and 1 H of your perimeter duties in Thailand. And, you want your evidence to stand out - that is why I say that any time you submit statements from yourself or other Veterans - consider ditching the VA Form 21-4138 and think about using a Sworn Declaration Form instead. I tell you all about our Sworn Declaration form in this post, here. Verify that your evidence is 5-Star Evidence: evidence that is material, probative, relevant, competent and credible. My experience tells me that the closer you get to 5-Star Lay Evidence, the higher the degree of success you will have in your VA Claim for a condition resulting from presumptive Agent Orange exposure. Do you know another way to prove Agent Orange Thailand exposure? If so, thousands of Veterans would love to hear your method - tell me about it using Veterans Mail Call, and I'll post about it in a future Veterans Law Blog post. Chris Attig, an Accredited Veterans Benefits attorney and Founder of the Attig Law Firm, PLLC is responsible for the content of the site. The principal office of Attig Law Firm, PLLC, is located in Dallas, Texas. Chris Attig is NOT Certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. - Please view our website disclaimer. ©2007-2013 Attig Law Firm, PLLC Lawyer Website Design by The Modern Firm

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