If you are a Gulf War Veteran, know this date: December 31, 2021. On 24 October 2017, the VA made its final ruling on the extension of the deadline for Gulf War veterans to receive disability benefits for certain presumptive conditions: December 31, 2021.
The affected VA on its website states, “Veterans discharged under conditions other than dishonorable who served in the Southwest Asia theater of military operations, which includes the areas specified by regulation, but not Afghanistan, may be entitled to disability compensation for certain undiagnosed illnesses, certain diagnosable chronic disability patterns, and certain presumptive diseases even though these disorders did not become manifest during qualifying service. Veterans who served in Afghanistan on or after September 19, 2001, may be entitled to disability compensation for certain presumptive diseases.”
Why is knowing this date important? The ruling affects the qualifying undiagnosed illnesses or diagnosable chronic disability pattern statement above. If you served in Operation Desert Shield, Operation Desert Storm, Operation Iraqi Freedom, or Operation New Dawn, and if your disability or illness did not appear during active duty in the Southwest Asia theater of military operations, then it must have appeared prior to December 31, 2021, to a degree that is at least 10-percent disabling (for VA rating purposes).
For more information, go here. If this applies to you, see an accredited veterans service officer for advice and assistance. LVMAC recommends that no veteran file a claim without their assistance — they can and usually do make a significant difference in getting you your proper rating and continued healthcare benefits.
As of 17 February 2018