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The PACT Act of 2022 — What Does It Mean for Our Veterans?


Congress recently signed the PACT Act (more formally known as the Sergeant First Class (SFC) Heath Robinson Honoring Our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics (PACT) Act.), a wide-ranging bill that addresses the health impacts of those who served overseas and were exposed to toxic hazards, such as burn pits, radiation and Agent Orange.

The PACT Act of 2022 will:

  • Expand and extend the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Healthcare eligibility to Post-9/11 combat Veterans
  • Add 23 burn pit and toxic exposure related conditions to the VA’s presumptive list of service connection
  • Expand six new service locations for Agent Orange exposure
  • Add two new conditions to the Agent Orange presumptive list
  • Provide expanded healthcare and disability benefits for Veterans and their families

This bill represents the most significant expansion of VA care and benefits for those exposed to harmful substances during their military service in VA history. Including these associated conditions in the VA’s presumptive list takes the burden of proof off Veterans exposed to burn pits. Implementation will be phased into practice from the effective date of August 10, 2022, to October 2026.

PACT ACT claims filed by August 10, 2023, if approved will be retroactive to August 10, 2022 when the legislation was enacted.

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You may also call the VA at 1-800-698-2411

This article was originally published September 23, 2022.