Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as ALS, is a neurodegenerative disease that causes a gradual breakdown of the neurons in the central nervous system. There is no cure for ALS, and most people who receive this diagnosis pass away within five years.
Since certain aspects of military service can cause or contribute to ALS, the VA presumes that former servicemembers diagnosed with this disease automatically qualify for disability compensation benefits. Even so, collecting payment through the VA disability program can be a complex undertaking. VetLaw’s team of skilled lawyers can help you pursue an ALS claim to obtain the benefits that you deserve.
ALS is a motor neuron disease that affects the body’s muscles and how they react to impulses sent by the central nervous system. According to the Mayo Clinic, symptoms often begin with an uncontrollable twitching in the limbs or slurred speech. Eventually, this breakdown in neuron function affects a person’s ability to walk, feed themselves, or even breathe.
ALS is a serious disease for which there is no cure, and the ALS Association estimates that over 5,000 people are diagnosed with it every year. Additionally, the average lifespan after an ALS diagnosis is three to five years.
The Mayo Clinic also associates a higher risk of ALS with military service. While the exact reason for this connection is unclear, doctors hypothesize that exposure to certain metals, traumatic injuries, and increased overall exertion may contribute to a person’s risk for ALS. A VA-accredited attorney could help demonstrate how this disease affects your life and can prepare you to file ALS claims for disability compensation.
Establishing a service connection between a disabling condition and time on active duty is usually the most difficult obstacle that veterans face when attempting to collect VA disability compensation benefits. However, certain conditions automatically qualify a veteran for disability compensation. Accordingly, the VA recognizes that an ALS diagnosis can be the direct result of active duty service in the military.
If a former servicemember receives a diagnosis of ALS after discharge and served continuously for at least 90 days, the VA will assume a service connection and award compensation benefits. VetLaw’s team of dedicated attorneys can help you compile evidence of your diagnosis and prepare you to file an associated claim for benefits.
Being diagnosed with ALS can be frightening and may bring uncertainty into a veteran’s life, as there is no cure for this disease. The VA recognizes that there may be a direct link between your time on active duty and your ALS diagnosis, so you may qualify for VA disability compensation benefits if you served on active duty for at least 90 continuous days and were diagnosed with ALS after discharge.
A VA-accredited attorney at VetLaw can help you pursue ALS claims by educating you on how the VA reads and processes applications. Call us today for help fighting for the benefits that you deserve.