Skip to content

December 6, 2023

How to Win VA Claims for Exposure to AFFF

Last updated on May 6, 2024

I hope you enjoy reading this blog post.

If you want to learn how to implement these strategies to get the VA benefits you deserve, click here to speak with a VA claim expert for free.

This comprehensive guide explores VA claims for exposure to AFFF, providing insight into the VA claims process and the available support for affected veterans.

We’ll also look at the associated health risks of Aqueous Film-Forming Foam (AFFF) exposure and how veterans can get service-connected for conditions related to their AFFF exposure.

Summary of Key Points

  • The highly toxic Aqueous Film-Forming Foam (AFFF) has been linked to various forms of cancer and other health problems.
  • If you suffer from a VA-ratable condition due to your exposure to AFFF, you could qualify for VA disability benefits and compensation.
  • The Veterans Exposed to Toxic PFAS Act is a legislative initiative focused on addressing the impact of PFAS exposure on veterans’ health. 
Picture of a firefighter wearing his gear.


Take advantage of a FREE VA Claim Discovery Call with an experienced Team Member. Learn what you’ve been missing so you can FINALLY get the disability rating and compensation you’ve earned for your service.

VA Claims for Exposure to AFFF 

AFFF, widely used in firefighting and emergency response, contains per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), known for their potential health risks. 

Veterans exposed to AFFF during their military service may face adverse health effects, ranging from respiratory issues to skin conditions

Recognizing the impact of AFFF is the first step in understanding the necessity of VA claims for exposure to AFFF.

Can You Get VA Compensation for AFFF Exposure?

Yes, any veteran who can establish a connection between exposure to this chemical and diagnosed conditions may file a claim seeking compensation for service-related health issues.

VA compensation for exposure to AFFF isn’t restricted solely to military firefighters but is open to any veteran whose diagnosed conditions can be linked to their exposure to these chemicals during active duty.

Disabled veteran in glasses, sitting in wheelchair at a computer, looking at his phone.

How to Get Service Connected for AFFF Exposure

When seeking VA benefits for AFFF exposure, you are seeking service connection for your condition that was caused by your AFFF exposure. 

To establish service connection, you need the following:

  1. A current medical diagnosis (e.g., a medical diagnosis of a VA-ratable condition, such as Psoriasis or cancer)
  2. An in-service event or injury (e.g., When you were exposed to AFFF)
  3. A medical nexus (or link) between 1 and 2 via competent medical evidence. This can be a doctor’s statement from a C&P exam, a VA Nexus Letter, etc., that provides this link.
Image of the VA Application for Health Benefits on a clipboard.

VA Disability Ratings and Compensation for Veterans Affected by AFFF Exposure

Exposure to AFFF often leads veterans to battle severe diseases, such as cancer, hindering their ability to carry out daily tasks.

As a result, many rely on the aid of a family member for routine activities.

Former military firefighters, for instance, enduring such disabling illnesses, may qualify for VA disability compensation.

Additionally, if the disease is linked to their service, they might receive cost-free healthcare. 

The VA assesses their disability percentage between 10% and 100%, determining the compensation amount accordingly.

The VA offers varying payouts based on disability ratings for veterans impacted by AFFF exposure. 

These VA monthly compensations fluctuate based on factors like the veteran’s familial responsibilities and whether they support dependents.

  • 10% VA disability rating: $165
  • 20% VA disability rating: $327
  • 30% VA disability rating: $508-$664
  • 40% VA disability rating: $731-$939
  • 50% VA disability rating: $1,041-$1,303
  • 60% VA disability rating: $1,319-$1,634
  • 70% VA disability rating: $1,663-$2,030
  • 80% VA disability rating: $1,933-$2,353
  • 90% VA disability rating: $2,172-$2,643
  • 100% VA disability rating: $3,621-$4,148

See the complete VA Disability Pay Chart here.

Woman doctor checking a female patient's lymph nodes.

AFFF Exposure VA Disability Legislation

Veterans encounter obstacles in securing rightful AFF exposure disability compensation, primarily due to the VA’s reluctance to recognize the correlation between AFFF exposure during active duty and resulting diseases. 

The Michael Lecik Military Firefighters Protection Act, introduced by Representative Abigail Spanberger in 2020, aims to establish presumptions of service connection for firefighting-related illnesses.

The legislation stemmed from the tragic passing of Michael Lecik, a former U.S. Air Force firefighter diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2019, attributed to frequent AFFF exposure. 

Despite his claim for VA disability compensation, it was denied, and he passed away in 2021. 

Scientific evidence confirms that exposure to PFAS chemicals in AFFF significantly heightens the risk of multiple myeloma. Moreover, firefighters confront additional risks from benzene and asbestos exposure, exacerbating the threat of multiple myeloma.

Navigating PFAS VA Disability involves comprehending both the potential compensation avenues and the profound health implications for veterans. 

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances PFAS, prevalent in substances like Aqueous Film-Forming Foam (AFFF), have been linked to serious health issues. 

Veterans exposed to PFAS during their military service may experience conditions such as liver damage, immune system dysfunction, and certain cancers. 

It’s not only about seeking compensation but also about securing the necessary medical care and acknowledgment of the unique challenges posed by PFAS exposure.

Veterans aiming for PFAS-related VA disability benefits should also explore the option of claiming on their own.

Veterans can independently navigate the process by educating themselves thoroughly. Understanding the intricacies of the claim process is key to increasing the chances of a successful outcome.

Graphic about PFASS per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances.

Can I Get VA Disability for PFAS Exposure?

Yes, veterans who can establish a connection between exposure to this chemical and diagnosed conditions may file a claim seeking compensation for service-related health issues.

The VA will conduct a toxic chemical risk assessment and is in the process of establishing a registry specifically for veterans who have been exposed to these dangerous substances.

Additionally, in recognition of the potential health risks associated with PFAS exposure, Congress has proposed the Veterans Exposed to Toxic PFAS Act.

This legislative initiative aims to ensure that veterans and their families receive compensation for the treatment of PFAS-related diseases. However, establishing the connection between healthcare needs and PFAS exposure at a military base, rather than another source, will be a crucial aspect of the claims process.

Given that PFAS is prevalent in the blood of up to 97% of Americans, proving exposure during military service can be challenging.

Veterans can navigate the complexities of the VA disability claims process and potentially obtain compensation for diseases related to PFAS exposure.


Veterans dealing with health issues linked to Aqueous Film-Forming Foam (AFFF) and exposure to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) face a complex journey toward securing VA disability compensation.

 Recognizing the potential impact of AFFF and PFAS on veterans’ well-being, it’s crucial for affected individuals to record their exposure instances and symptoms meticulously.

Efforts such as the development of a registry and legislative measures like the Veterans Exposed to Toxic PFAS Act demonstrate a commitment to addressing the specific hurdles stemming from toxic exposure during military service.

Establishing the link between health conditions and exposure can be daunting, especially considering PFAS’s widespread presence in the general population. 

However, staying informed, actively participating in the VA claims process, and seeking professional assistance enable veterans not only to navigate the intricacies of obtaining disability benefits but also contribute to broader discussions concerning the health and welfare of those who’ve served our nation.

VA Claims for Exposure to AFFF (FAQs) Frequently Asked Questions 

Can I file a VA claim for exposure to AFFF?

Yes, veterans can file a VA claim for conditions caused by exposure to Aqueous Film-Forming Foam (AFFF). The VA recognizes the potential health risks associated with AFFF exposure and provides a platform for affected veterans to seek compensation for related health issues.

What kind of health issues can result from AFFF exposure?

AFFF exposure has been linked to various health issues, including respiratory problems, skin conditions, and gastrointestinal complications. Veterans experiencing these symptoms may be eligible for compensation through VA claims for exposure to AFFF.

How does the VA claims process for AFFF VA Claims?

The VA claims process for AFFF exposure involves thorough documentation of AFFF exposure incidents, medical history, a diagnosed condition, and related symptoms. Veterans need to provide a comprehensive overview of the impact on their health to strengthen their VA claims successfully.

Is PFAS exposure considered in VA disability claims?

Yes, conditions caused by PFAS exposure, including exposure from AFFF, are considered in VA disability claims. Veterans should be aware of the relationship between PFAS and various health conditions, as it can have implications for their overall VA disability claim.

What legislative initiatives address PFAS exposure for veterans?

The Veterans Exposed to Toxic PFAS Act is a legislative initiative focused on addressing the impact of PFAS exposure on veterans’ health. 

This act emphasizes the growing recognition of potential health risks associated with PFAS, including AFFF, and aims to ensure that affected veterans receive necessary medical care and disability compensation.

American flag flying from a crane.


Most veterans are underrated for their disabilities and, therefore, not getting their due compensation. At VA Claims Insider, we help you understand and take control of the claims process so you can get the rating and compensation you’re owed by law. 

Our process takes the guesswork out of filing a VA disability claim and supports you every step of the way in building a fully-developed claim (FDC)—so you can increase your rating FAST!

If you’ve filed your VA disability claim and have been denied or have received a low rating—or you’re unsure how to get started—reach out to us! Take advantage of a FREE VA Claim Discovery Call. Learn what you’ve been missing—so you can FINALLY get the disability rating and compensation YOU DESERVE!

Related Articles

Featured Resources

Elite Membership

Dear Veteran,
Here’s the brutal truth about VA disability claims:

According to our data, 8/10 (80%) of veterans reading this message right now are underrated by the VA…

This means you do NOT currently have the VA disability rating and compensation YOU deserve, and you could be missing out on thousands of dollars of tax-free compensation and benefits each month.

As a fellow disabled Veteran this is shameful and I’m on a mission to change it.

Brian Reese here, Air Force service-disabled Veteran and Founder @ VA Claims Insider.

Since 2016, VA Claims Insider has helped thousands of Veterans just like you get the VA rating and compensation they deserve in less time.

If accepted into our ELITE membership program, you’ll get free up-front access and permission to use $13,119 worth of proprietary VA claim resources, including access to our network of independent medical professionals for medical examinations, disability evaluations, and credible Medical Nexus Letters, which could help you get a HIGHER VA rating in LESS time.

It’s FREE to get started, so click “Go Elite Now” below to complete our 3-step intake process.

  1. Complete Basic Information
  2. Sign Members Agreement
  3. Join the Mastermind Group

If you’re stuck, frustrated, underrated, and currently rated between 0%-90%, VA Claims Insider Elite is for you!

Click “Go Elite Now” below to get started today and a member of our team will be in touch within minutes.

Go Elite Now!

Why Choose VA Claims Insider

You’ve exhausted your free resources

You're not alone. Thousands of other Veterans in our Community are here for you.

Veteran Community

You’re ready to get the rating you deserve

We know the pain of feeling stuck, frustrated, and alone, and we want to make this process as easy and painless as possible for you.

Explore Elite Membership

We win ONLY when YOU win

Hear from fellow Veterans just like you, with many of our Veteran Ambassadors having gone through our programs.

Schedule a Call

Fellow Veterans:

For a limited time, you can book a free, no-obligation VA Claim Discovery Call with one of our experts.

Book A Call

Fellow Veterans:

For a limited time, you can book a free, no-obligation VA Claim Discovery Call with one of our experts.

Book A Call