A deadline for a year’s worth of backdated benefits is fast approaching for U.S. veterans suffering illnesses after exposure to open burn pits, Agent Orange and other toxins.

Nearly a year ago, President Joe Biden signed the PACT Act, a law supporters describe as the largest expansion of veteran benefits in U.S. history. The law eases the path to expanded coverage, alleviating veterans from having to prove that conditions such as respiratory illness and cancer are a result of breathing toxic burn pit fumes or exposure to radiation or chemicals like tactical herbicides.

There is no deadline for qualifying veterans to file under the PACT Act, but former service members or their surviving family members have until Aug. 9 to claim benefits that date back to the law’s enactment in August 2022.

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