Veterans and Mesothelioma

Veterans bravely served our country, but many now face a new fight: mesothelioma. The risk of mesothelioma is higher for veterans since asbestos was used in all branches of the military. Roughly 33% of mesothelioma diagnoses involve veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces.

Veterans with mesothelioma or other asbestos diseases may be eligible for compensation from military asbestos lawsuits and VA benefits. Call (800) 647-3434 now to see if you qualify for free.

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Military Asbestos Exposure: How Veterans Get Mesothelioma

A veteran salutes an American flag

Americans who served in the U.S. military are at risk of mesothelioma, a dangerous cancer caused by asbestos exposure.

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that resists fire and heat, making it a valuable addition to thousands of products used by the military.

For most of the 20th century, this mineral was found in ships, vehicles, and bases used by members of the Armed Forces — and thousands of veterans have fallen ill as a result.

Veterans with Mesothelioma Facts and Figures

  • Veterans make up 33% of all mesothelioma diagnoses.
  • Mesothelioma and asbestos lung cancer have a 100% disability rating from the VA.
  • VA disability compensation for mesothelioma starts at $3,737.85 per month.
  • Asbestos military lawsuit settlements average $1 Million to $1.4 Million.
  • Lawsuits are filed against companies that made or sold products containing asbestos.
  • One-third of all mesothelioma cases are linked to U.S. Navy ships and shipyards.

Veterans with mesothelioma may be able to pursue financial compensation and VA benefits with the help of an experienced mesothelioma law firm like Sokolove Law.

For more than 45 years, Sokolove Law has fought for justice on behalf of thousands of veterans with mesothelioma and their families, securing more than $5 Billion from asbestos claims nationwide.

Get a free case review now to see if we can fight to get you the compensation you deserve.

Asbestos Exposure in the Military

Most veterans likely experienced asbestos exposure in the military during active-duty service to some degree, regardless of their occupation or the military branch they were a part of.

Find out more about asbestos exposure by military branch:

  • U.S. Air Force: Asbestos was widely used in military plane parts, including in heat shields and cockpit cooling systems. Mechanics faced the greatest risk of exposure to asbestos, in addition to aviation machinist mates and engine inspectors.
  • U.S. Army: Vehicle parts used in U.S. Army trucks, tanks, and jeeps could release asbestos fibers during maintenance or after years of wear and tear. At Fort Bragg, the U.S. Army’s largest base, hundreds of thousands of service members were likely exposed.
  • U.S. Coast Guard: Asbestos-based products were used in the construction of cutters and other ships to prevent fires on board. In fact, over 300 cutters were built with asbestos.
  • U.S. Marine Corps: U.S. Marines often worked alongside other branches of the military, and the bases, vehicles, shipyards, and aircraft they used could all contain asbestos. Asbestos was also present on the naval ships used to transport U.S. Marines.
  • U.S. Navy: A government mandate once required asbestos to be used in every naval ship. Asbestos-based products could be found in the engine rooms and boiler rooms of ships, as well as throughout shipyards.

Filing a claim for VA benefits is not the only option for veterans with mesothelioma or lung cancer. Compensation may be available from the manufacturers of these products as well.

Our asbestos attorneys have already secured more than $1.3 Billion for military personnel with mesothelioma and their families.

Legal Help for Veterans with Mesothelioma

Veterans with mesothelioma may be able to secure compensation, health care, and other benefits after an asbestos-related disease diagnosis.

Compensation may be available from:

  • Mesothelioma claims that result in a settlement or verdict
  • Asbestos trust funds established by manufacturers that declared bankruptcy
  • Benefits provided by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

“What convinced me to carry on with a lawsuit was when I was informed I wasn’t suing the government, I wasn’t suing the U.S. Navy. I was suing the manufacturer. I got mad then. Because they knew, many years prior, what asbestos would do to a human.”
– Walter, U.S. Navy Veteran & Firm Client

When you work with Sokolove Law, we’ll handle every step of the legal process on your behalf and fight for the maximum compensation available to you.

Billions Recovered Nationwide

We’ve secured over $5 Billion for thousands of mesothelioma patients and their families nationwide. Let us get you the results you deserve.

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Military Asbestos Lawsuit

Military asbestos lawsuits can provide veterans and their families with significant compensation. These lawsuits are filed against companies that made or sold asbestos-containing products, not the U.S. military or government.

The majority of military asbestos lawsuits settle, and many of our clients start getting compensation within 90 days of contacting us.

$1M - $1.4M

Average Mesothelioma Settlement Amount

Past asbestos lawsuit settlements we’ve secured for veterans with mesothelioma include: 

  • $11.12 Million to a U.S. Air Force veteran in Arizona
  • $10.23 Million for a boiler tender and U.S. Navy veteran in California
  • $9.3 Million for the family of a U.S. Navy veteran in Massachusetts
  • $5.31 Million to a U.S. Army veteran and heavy equipment operator in Maryland
  • $5 Million for a U.S. Army veteran and farmer in North Dakota
  • $4.42 Million for an Indiana boiler room repairman in the U.S. Navy
  • $4.35 Million to a U.S. Army veteran and construction worker in Ohio
  • $4 Million for a U.S. Navy veteran and shipyard worker in Massachusetts
  • $3.91 Million to a U.S. Army veteran and supervisor in Utah
  • $3.87 Million for a Connecticut U.S. Navy veteran and auto mechanic
  • $3.67 Million to a U.S. Marine Corps veteran
  • $3.6 Million for a Texas U.S. Army veteran and asbestos worker
  • $3.48 Million for a heavy weapons infantryman in the U.S. Army
  • $3.1 Million for a U.S. Navy veteran and union sheet metal worker in Alaska
  • $2.9 Million to a construction worker and U.S. Marine Corps veteran
  • $2.85 Million for a Nebraska U.S. Army veteran and communication worker
  • $2.6 Million for a Kansas U.S. Air Force veteran and warehouse worker
  • $2.5 Million to a union insulator and U.S. Air Force veteran in Tennessee

If your loved one has already passed away from mesothelioma, you may be able to file an asbestos claim after their death and seek justice on their behalf.

While there’s never a guarantee of compensation, we’ll fight hard to get you everything you’re entitled to.

Call (800) 647-3434 now to see if you may be eligible for mesothelioma compensation. It costs nothing to speak with us.

Asbestos Trust Funds

Courts ordered asbestos-related companies that filed for bankruptcy to set aside money in asbestos trust funds for current and future mesothelioma patients. Veterans may be able to access a portion of this money from the comfort of their own home — without having to sue anyone.

$30 Billion

Estimated Amount in Asbestos Trust Funds

On average, asbestos trust fund claims award $300,000 to $400,000 in total payouts. We can handle every step of the claims process for you, so you can focus on your health and family.

Our mesothelioma lawyers can determine if you may be eligible to access asbestos trust fund compensation — at no cost to you.

Mesothelioma Veterans Benefits

Mesothelioma veterans benefits like disability compensation, health care, pensions, and survivors benefits may be available to anyone who served in the U.S. military and was later diagnosed with mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma qualifies for a 100% disability rating, which allows veterans with mesothelioma to receive the highest payouts possible from the VA.


VA Monthly Payment for Mesothelioma, Plus Free Health Care

Veterans with mesothelioma can receive compensation for:

  • At-home caregivers and nursing
  • Burial and memorial services
  • Surviving spouses, dependents, and next of kin
  • Disability based on the level of impairment
  • Mesothelioma treatments at specialized medical centers
  • Medications
  • Mobility aids and other medical equipment
  • Therapy and mental health counseling

VA compensation for asbestos exposure can help improve the quality of life for veterans with mesothelioma. Our team can help you increase your current disability rating, file a VA claim for the first time, or appeal a denied claim.

Help for Mesothelioma Vets Video Thumbnail
Video Summary: Sokolove Law Managing Attorney Ricky LeBlanc explains why veterans are at a higher risk of mesothelioma and how filing a lawsuit and VA claims can help victims get justice and compensation.

For our veterans, there is a strong likelihood that you had exposure to asbestos products while serving our country. That's certainly true of the majority of our Naval veterans. But if you're in the Air Force, or Navy, or Marines, or Army, Coast Guard, and you were around aircrafts, they also contained asbestos. We tell our veterans that you should always file the mesothelioma lawsuit because it is a place where you're going to get full compensation, or at least the closest compensation and justice we can get you. But if you have the option of filing a VA claim, you certainly should look into that as well. Don't fall into the trap that the VA claim is your best and only solution. The Veterans Administration, while it provides benefits, those benefits at least in their full form, are only paid out to the veteran. Once the veteran is deceased, the family doesn't receive the same monthly benefit as they once did. The Veterans Administration does not pay you for any of your pain, any of the suffering you have, any the loss of enjoyment of your grandchildren or your wife, that doesn't happen. If you go in the civil court system, we can make claims for all of those things and get you more fully compensated. If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, Sokolove Law is here to help call us today at 800-647-3434.

How to Secure Mesothelioma Veterans Compensation

Pursuing mesothelioma compensation from a lawsuit or VA claim is an incredibly complex process. Our VA-accredited asbestos attorneys can take care of all of the legal legwork for you, so you don’t miss out on the benefits you deserve.

Our asbestos lawyers can: 

  • Provide you with a free case review to determine if you qualify for compensation
  • Gather evidence showing which asbestos-containing products you were exposed to
  • File a military asbestos lawsuit against the companies responsible for your illness
  • Prepare a VA claim for mesothelioma veterans benefits or increase your current disability rating
  • Negotiate military asbestos lawsuit settlements or pursue a verdict in court

In one case, our legal team fought for a U.S. Navy veteran with mesothelioma in court — and after less than two hours of deliberation, a jury awarded him a groundbreaking $40 Million verdict.

Many veterans may be eligible for mesothelioma compensation from multiple sources. Our team will determine all of the options you qualify for in order to maximize your potential payout.

You fought for our country — let us fight for you. Call (800) 647-3434 now to get started.

Where Was Asbestos Used in the Military?

Asbestos was used extensively in both military structures and methods of transportation for most of the 20th century. It provided durability, fireproofing, and insulation to equipment, vehicles, and buildings found on bases across the country.

However, when products containing asbestos were damaged or began to wear down, asbestos could be released into the air, putting those nearby at serious risk.

Sadly, many veterans weren’t warned about the risks or offered protective equipment. Companies that made and sold these products kept the dangers of asbestos a secret to protect their profits, which put countless veterans in harm’s way.

"Veterans have a right to hold responsible the companies that produced and sold asbestos-containing materials to the military. Filing an asbestos legal claim does not impact VA benefits."
– Ricky LeBlanc, Managing Attorney at Sokolove Law

With the rise of asbestos litigation in the 1970s and 1980s, the military stopped using the toxic mineral. Still, asbestos from the past lingers behind in older military bases, buildings, equipment, ships, and vehicles.

Asbestos in Military Housing & Bases

Asbestos on military bases was almost unavoidable between the 1930s and the 1980s. Bases across the country were built using products that contained asbestos, including buildings for military housing, mess halls, and training spaces.

Asbestos on military bases and housing could be found in:

  • Cement
  • Drywall
  • Electrical wiring
  • Gaskets
  • Insulation
  • Joint compound
  • Paint
  • Shingles
  • Tiles
  • Valves

While the military removed a great deal of asbestos from bases once the dangers were known, some bases have only recently taken to removing it.

For instance, an aircraft hangar with asbestos at U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune was renovated as recently as 2021.

Asbestos in Military Aircraft & Vehicles

Asbestos was used to help prolong the life of aircraft and vehicle parts, in addition to providing insulation and fireproofing. However, mechanics who worked on these parts could unknowingly inhale asbestos dust as they completed their obligations.

Asbestos in military aircraft and vehicles could be found in:

  • Adhesives
  • Brake linings and brake pads
  • Clutch facings
  • Cockpit heating systems
  • Engines
  • Electrical wiring
  • Gaskets
  • Heat shields
  • Insulation
  • Jet exhausts
  • Resins
  • Torque valves
  • Transmission parts

Veterans who operated or worked on military aircraft and vehicles would sometimes wear gloves that contained asbestos to protect themselves from burns.

Asbestos in Ships & Shipyards

U.S. Navy ships and shipyards are responsible for the majority of military asbestos exposures. Products containing asbestos were key to protecting ships from corrosion and possible fires out at sea.

Aboard ships and in shipyards, asbestos could be found in:

  • Adhesives
  • Boilers, boiler linings, and heat shields
  • Cables
  • Caulk
  • Deck coverings
  • Electrical coating
  • Engines
  • Gaskets and valves
  • Grinders
  • Insulation
  • Lagging and rope
  • Linings of steel wall plates and doors
  • Meters
  • Packing
  • Paint
  • Paneling
  • Pipes, pipe insulation, and pipe coverings
  • Pumps
  • Sealants
  • Thermal insulation
  • Tiles
  • Tubing
  • Turbines

Asbestos-containing products used in naval ships and shipyards can be linked to 1 in 3 mesothelioma diagnoses.

Since many ships had poor ventilation, asbestos could remain in the air for long periods of time and place nearby service members at risk of breathing in or swallowing stray fibers.

Mesothelioma & Military Personnel: Jobs at Risk of Asbestos Exposure

While all veterans are at a higher risk of developing mesothelioma than the general population, certain roles within the U.S. military involved higher amounts of asbestos exposure than others.

Service members with a risk of military asbestos exposure include:

  • Aircraft mechanics
  • Boiler room workers
  • Carpenters and construction workers
  • Electricians
  • Enginemen
  • Firefighters
  • Heavy equipment operators
  • Hull maintenance workers
  • Insulators
  • Machinist mates
  • Pipefitters
  • Plumbers
  • Technicians
  • Shipbuilders
  • Shipyard workers
  • Steelworkers
  • Vehicle mechanics
  • Welders

One U.S. Navy veteran served as a fireman and boiler tender. He completed repairs in the engine and fire rooms of multiple ships, which exposed him to asbestos-containing gaskets. Decades later, this veteran was diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma.

Military asbestos exposure can be devastating, but our dedicated team is here to hold the companies responsible for your illness accountable.

Let Us Fight for Your Family

We've already helped thousands of veterans with mesothelioma get compensation and hold the companies that made them sick accountable. See if we can help your family too.

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Secondhand Military Asbestos Exposure

Unfortunately, the dangers of asbestos aren’t limited to those directly exposed to the toxic mineral. If you came in contact with asbestos, the dangerous fibers may have remained on your clothing and traveled home with you.

Family members, friends, and coworkers near you could have been at risk of secondhand asbestos exposure. Sadly, many loved ones of veterans have been diagnosed with asbestos-related cancers as a result.

Sokolove Law: Serving Veterans with Mesothelioma for Over 45 Years

At Sokolove Law, our mesothelioma law firm has proudly helped thousands of veterans and their families pursue compensation for military asbestos exposure.

We have VA-accredited attorneys on staff who can help eligible veterans pursue compensation from every avenue available to them, including military asbestos lawsuits, VA benefits, and asbestos trust fund claims.

Since 1979, we’ve recovered over $5 Billion total for mesothelioma clients across the country, including thousands of veterans with mesothelioma and their families.

If you’re a veteran with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease, contact our team as soon as possible, so you don’t miss out on the justice and compensation you deserve.

Call (800) 647-3434 right now to get started. It costs nothing to speak with our team and find out about your family’s options.

Veterans and Mesothelioma FAQs

Why do veterans get mesothelioma?

Exposure to asbestos has caused thousands of veterans to develop mesothelioma. Products that contained asbestos were used by all branches of the military up until the 1980s, which put those who worked closely with these products at risk of this disease.

Because of the military’s widespread asbestos usage, veterans now make up 33% of all mesothelioma diagnoses.

Is there compensation for veterans with mesothelioma?

Yes. Veterans with mesothelioma may be able to pursue compensation from:

  • Asbestos trust fund claims
  • Benefits offered by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Mesothelioma lawsuits against companies that manufactured or sold asbestos-containing products

Find out if you may be eligible for compensation during a free, no-obligation case review.

How much do veterans get for mesothelioma?

Veterans with mesothelioma may get:

  • An average of $1 Million to $1.4 Million from military asbestos lawsuits
  • Over $3,700 a month from mesothelioma VA benefits
  • $300,000 to $400,000 total on average from asbestos trust funds

Our experienced mesothelioma lawyers will fight hard to get you everything you’re entitled to from each option you qualify for.

Call (800) 647-3434 now to see if you can pursue compensation for your illness.

Can you sue the military for asbestos exposure?

Not quite. Military asbestos lawsuits are filed against companies that made or sold products with asbestos, not the U.S. government or the military.

These companies hid the dangers of their products from the military and the public for decades in order to protect their profits.

How do I prove that I was exposed to asbestos?

At Sokolove Law, we’ll take care of that for you. We have a database of job sites and asbestos-containing products used across the country as well as a team of investigators who can determine how you were exposed.

With decades of experience helping thousands of families across the country, it’s possible we may have already represented someone from the same or similar job site as you.

What mesothelioma veterans benefits are available?

Veterans with mesothelioma are often able to secure monthly disability payments, health care, and more from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Mesothelioma veterans benefits include:

  • Aid & Attendance: Veterans who are unable to take care of themselves due to their illness may be eligible for additional compensation that can be added to their VA pension.
  • Housebound Benefits: If a veteran with mesothelioma is unable to leave their home due to health complications, they may be awarded additional payments added to their pension.
  • VA Disability Compensation: Veterans who developed mesothelioma after military asbestos exposure can receive tax-free compensation worth more than $3,700 a month.
  • VA Health Care: The VA Health Care System can provide enrolled veterans with access to mesothelioma specialists, home health care, medical equipment, and more.
  • VA Pensions: Veterans and surviving family members may be eligible for monthly pension payments to help with medical and financial challenges. Eligibility is based on your net worth and income.
  • VA Special Monthly Compensation (SMC): For veterans facing significant challenges due to their illness, additional compensation may be awarded to support extra care costs.
  • VA Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (VA DIC): If a veteran passes away from mesothelioma, their spouse, children, or parents can apply for compensation from the VA.

Compensation may also be available from legal claims, like asbestos lawsuits and trust fund claims for diseases from exposure during service.

Get a free case review now to find out which veterans mesothelioma benefits you may be able to receive.

Does mesothelioma qualify for disability?

Yes. If you were exposed to asbestos while serving in the military and later developed mesothelioma, you may be eligible for disability benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Call (800) 647-3434 now. We can help you file a claim or increase your VA disability rating after a mesothelioma diagnosis.

What is the VA disability rating for mesothelioma?

The VA disability rating for mesothelioma is 100% due to the severity of the disease. This allows veterans with mesothelioma to receive the highest amounts possible for their illness.

If your disability rating is less than 100%, or if your previous claim was denied, our mesothelioma attorneys can file an appeal on your behalf so you can get all of the compensation you’re entitled to.

How much is VA compensation for asbestos exposure?

VA compensation for asbestos exposure leading to mesothelioma is $3,737.85 a month for a single veteran. This amount is higher for married veterans and veterans with dependent children.

We can help veterans with mesothelioma access the benefits they deserve. Call (800) 647-3434 now to get started.

What can VA-accredited attorneys do for veterans with mesothelioma?

VA-accredited attorneys like Ricky LeBlanc at Sokolove Law can help veterans with mesothelioma:

  • File VA claims for mesothelioma veterans benefits
  • Detail and prove asbestos exposure to ensure you receive benefits
  • Secure additional benefits, even if you’ve already filed a claim
  • Navigate the appeals process if your previous VA claims have been denied
  • Increase your current VA disability rating to 100%

Working with a VA-accredited mesothelioma lawyer can help take the headache out of this complicated process.

How much does it cost to file a military asbestos lawsuit?

At Sokolove Law, there are no upfront costs or hourly fees to file a military asbestos lawsuit.

Our mesothelioma attorneys work on a contingency-fee basis, which means we only get paid if your case results in compensation.

Where was asbestos used in the military?

In the military, asbestos was used in aircraft, vehicles, buildings on bases, ships, and shipyards. This toxic mineral could be found in many of the construction materials and mechanical components used by the U.S. Armed Forces because of its fire-resistant properties and durability.

If you’re a veteran with mesothelioma, you may have been exposed to asbestos while serving in the military. Get a free case review now to see if our team can fight for the compensation you deserve.

Which military branch has the most veterans with mesothelioma?

The majority of veterans with mesothelioma served in the U.S. Navy, as this branch of the military had the highest rate of asbestos use.

However, asbestos was used in every branch of the military from the 1930s until the early 1980s, which puts nearly 20 million former soldiers at risk of developing an asbestos-related disease.

How many veterans get mesothelioma?

Every year, approximately 1,000 veterans are diagnosed with mesothelioma, making up roughly one-third of all cases.

Sadly, because it can take 20-50 years for symptoms of mesothelioma to appear, additional veterans may be living with the disease without even realizing it.

Can I file a military asbestos lawsuit in addition to receiving VA benefits?

In many cases, yes. Veterans with mesothelioma and their family members are often able to secure compensation from a military asbestos lawsuit in addition to VA benefits.

We can determine if you may be eligible to file a military asbestos lawsuit. Pursuing compensation through a lawsuit does not impact your ability to collect mesothelioma VA benefits.

  1. Naval History and Heritage Museum. “DN-SC-94-00632 USS Tempest (PC-2).” Retrieved from: Accessed on June 29, 2024.
  2. United States Marine Corps. “MARINE CORPS INSTALLATIONS EAST-MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE ORDER 5090.62A.” Retrieved from: Accessed on June 29, 2024.
  3. U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. “2024 Veterans disability compensation rates.” Retrieved from: Accessed on June 29, 2024.
  4. U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. “Exposure to Asbestos.” Retrieved from: Accessed on June 29, 2024.
  5. U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. “VA Disability Compensation.” Retrieved from: Accessed on June 29, 2024.
  6. U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. “Veterans Asbestos Exposure.” Retrieved from: Accessed on June 29, 2024.