Former POWs are eligible for VA compensation for disabilities related to their military service and captivity. Certain conditions are presumed to be related to time in captivity. These presumptive disabilities are based on studies of the long-term effects of captivity, deprivation, trauma, and cold injury on former POWs. If a former POW is diagnosed as having one or more of these conditions to a degree that is at least 10 percent disabling, VA presumes that it is associated with the POW experience. Over 16,000 POWs are receiving disability compensation for service-connected injuries, diseases, or illnesses.
Former POWs who are diagnosed with any of the conditions in the categories below are presumed to be service-connected for those conditions, regardless of their length of time in captivity:
The following additional conditions are presumed to be service-connected for former POWs who were captive for 30 days or more:
For more information on how to apply and for tips on making sure your claim is ready to be processed by VA, visit our How to Apply page.
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Last updated January 19, 2018