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Does The VA Recognize Agent Orange Exposure On Guam?

Published on August 21st, 2020

Veterans who served on Guam have long claimed that Agent Orange was used on Guam. The US Government will not corroborate these claims, but in the face of growing evidence of Agent Orange on Guam, it may need to change its tune. According to a report published by The National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) and the Jerome N. Frank Legal Services Organization of Yale Law School (LSO), any veteran who served on Guam between 1962 and 1975 was probably exposed to the toxic pesticide.

At Jackson & MacNichol, we have a proven track record of helping veterans access compensation for their exposure to Agent Orange. If the VA is denying a service connection for your condition, or claims that you were not exposed to Agent Orange, a veterans benefit lawyer can help you successfully appeal. For a free consultation about your options for appealing the denial of your disability benefits, call us today at 1(800) 524-3339.

The US Government Won’t Admit to Agent Orange Use on Guam

During the Vietnam War, tens of thousands of veterans served on Guam, an important base for the Air Force’s B-52 strategic bomber force. Why would Agent Orange be used on a remote location so far from the battlefields of Southeast asia? Although official government records are lacking, service members testify that they used herbicides for vegetation control, and that large quantities of it were also disposed of in landfills across the island.

The US Government’s official position is that the lack of official records pertaining to the storage or use of Agent Orange on Guam rules out any conclusions on the matter. This means that they will neither deny nor admit to the exposure. In 2017, US Representative Dennis Ross of Florida introduced a bill that would establish a presumption of Agent Orange exposure for veterans who served on Guam, the Mariana Islands, or Northern Samoa. The bill died in committee and the issue has not been raised in Congress since.

Some Guam-based veterans have successfully applied for compensation for Agent Orange exposure, even though their cases did not qualify for a presumption of service connection. They had to provide evidence that it was more likely than not that they were exposed to Agent Orange on Guam, and that Agent Orange caused their condition. These fact-intensive cases can take years to resolve, and most often require the assistance of an experienced VA benefits lawyer.

The Department of Defense records needed to conclusively prove the official use of Agent Orange on Guam were likely lost or destroyed. This means that your case for exposure must be built around your own service records and trusted testimony regarding the use of herbicides on Guam. The new NVLSP/LSO report about Agent Orange use on Guam will be a valuable resource for any veterans seeking evidence of exposure and its potential health consequences.

Prove Your Agent Orange Exposure With the Help of a VA Disability Lawyer

Until the US Government admits to its use of Agent Orange on Guam, veterans face an uphill battle in receiving compensation for their exposure. Fortunately, the veterans benefits lawyers of Jackson & MacNichol can help you build a convincing case. If you or a loved one served on Guam during the Vietnam War, you could be entitled to substantial benefits. Call Jackson & MacNichol today at 1(800) 524-3339 for a free consultation about the veterans disability appeals process. We get justice for veterans.


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