Statements of Principles (SOPs) determined by the RMA are legislative instruments and have the same legal effect as any legislation passed by Parliament. SOPs exclusively state what factors must exist to establish a causal connection between particular diseases, injuries or death and service.
The SOPs apply to decisions about liability for injuries, diseases and deaths made under both the Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986 (VEA) and the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 (MRCA).
Apart from several exceptions provided for in the MRCA all claims must be assessed by reference to the relevant SOP where a SOP exists.
All current SOPs (as well as a comprehensive record of all past versions of SOPs produced by the RMA) can be found on this page. You can search for a SOP by name, number or year, and follow the changes in a SOP over time as medical-scientific understanding of the risk factors for a condition has developed.
Claims concerning diseases and injuries that are not covered by SOPs can still be lodged with and determined by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, but are determined by having regard to available medical opinions and evidence rather than a SOP. Opinions may vary, and the decision-maker is required in such cases to reach a conclusion about the causal relationship of the condition with service on the basis of all of the available relevant evidence.
There are a number of clinical conditions which following investigation by the RMA have been declared not to be injuries or diseases for the purposes of the VEA or MRCA or not able to be related to service. These declarations are binding on decision-makers and claims for such conditions cannot be accepted. A full list of these non-SOP conditions can be accessed here.
Current investigations of conditions not covered by SOPs
If the RMA has notified that it intends to carry out an investigation of a non-SOP condition, claims relating to that condition under the VEA cannot be determined by the Repatriation Commission (DVA), and claims or reviews relating to that condition under the MRCA cannot be determined by the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Commission (DVA), the Veterans’ Review Board (VRB) or the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT). You can find a full list of current non-SOP investigations yet to be completed here.
View lists of conditions by category
- Blood and Blood-forming Organs
- Circulatory System
- Congenital Anomalies / Hereditary Conditions
- Digestive System
- Endocrine, Nutritional, Metabolic Diseases; Disorders of the Immune System
- Genitourinary System
- Infectious and Parasitic Diseases
- Mental Disorders
- Musculoskeletal System and Connective Tissue
- Nervous System, Sense Organs
- Respiratory System
- Skin and Subcutaneous Tissue