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ICYMI: Conway Daily Sun: Hassan Discusses Veterans Benefits in Conway

CONWAY – In case you missed it, last Friday Senator Hassan led a discussion at Tuckerman Brewing in Conway with New Hampshire veterans and VA officials about the PACT Act, which she helped develop and pass into law. Senator Hassan emphasized that veterans should apply for their benefits as soon as possible. While there is no deadline to apply for these benefits, veterans who apply or submit an intent to apply by August 9th can have their benefits backdated to August 10, 2022, the anniversary of the PACT Act being signed into law. More than 1,000 veterans have already enrolled in VA health care and more than 2,000 PACT Act-related disability claims have been filed in New Hampshire.

Read more from The Conway Daily Sun:

The Conway Daily Sun: Hassan discusses veterans benefits in Conway

By Daymond Steer

U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan took part in a roundtable at Tuckerman Brewing to help get the word out that veterans’ opportunity to get retroactive health-care benefits through the PACT Act is expiring.

Hassan met with about 10 veterans and VA and Office of Veterans Services officials at Tuckerman to discuss the PACT (Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics) Act, which was enacted about year ago.

The PACT Act expands service-related disabilities covered with veterans’ benefits, and up until Aug. 9 it allows veterans to retroactively file back to Aug. 10, 2022, when the act was signed into law.

“On Aug. 9, retroactive benefits for disability goes away,” said Hassan. “We’re trying to get the word out as effectively as possible.”

Attendees at the rountdtable included veterans Bob Jaffin, Mike and Dianne Hogan, Ken McKenzie, Jamie Cummings and Bill Gaudreau of New Hampshire Division of Veterans Services, and Kevin Forrest, director of Manchester Veterans Affairs.

Disability claims don’t have to be totally complete, but they do have to be started online by that date, she said. The website to open a claim is

Hassan said the bill was passed to acknowledge that veterans were exposed to toxic substances during their service.

“Whether it’s Agent Orange in Vietnam, whether it’s burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan, we wanted to make sure that veterans were able to get the health and the disability benefits in particular that they’ve earned and deserve,” said Hassan.

The PACT Act expands VA health-care eligibility to Post-9/11 combat veterans; sddd 23 burn pit and toxic exposure-related conditions to VA’s list of service presumptions, including hypertension; expands presumptions related to Agent Orange exposure; includes Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Guam, American Samoa, and Johnston Atoll as locations for Agent Orange exposure; strengthens federal research on toxic exposure; improves VA’s resources and training for toxic-exposed veterans; and sets up veterans up for success by investing in: VA claims processing. […]