Proposed Information Collection (Application for Dependency and Indemnity Compensation; Death Pension and Accrued Benefits by a Surviving Spouse or Child; Application for Dependency and Indemnity Compensation by a Surviving Spouse or Child-In-Service Death Application for DIC, Death Pension, and or, Accrued Benefits) Activity: Comment Request
The Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), is announcing an opportunity for public comment on the proposed collection of certain information by the agency. Under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995, Federal agencies are required to publish notice in the Federal Register concerning each proposed collection of information, including each proposed revision of currently approved collection, and allow 60 days for public comment in response to this notice. This notice solicits comments for information needed to determine entitlement to dependency and indemnity compensation (DIC), death pension and accrued benefits, and dependency and indemnity compensation by a surviving spouse or child-in-service death.
Standard Claims and Appeals Forms
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) amends its adjudication regulations and the appeals regulations and rules of practice of the Board of Veterans' Appeals (Board) to require that all claims governed by VA's adjudication regulations be filed on standard forms prescribed by the Secretary, regardless of the type of claim or posture in which the claim arises. This rulemaking also eliminates the constructive receipt of VA reports of hospitalization or examination and other medical records as informal claims for increase or to reopen while retaining the retroactive effective date assignment for awards for claims for increase which are filed on a standard form within 1 year of such hospitalization, examination, or treatment. This final rule also implements the concept of an intent to file a claim for benefits, which operates similarly to the current informal claim process, but requires that the submission establishing a claimant's effective date of benefits must be received in one of three specified formats. Finally, these amendments will provide that VA will accept an expression of dissatisfaction or disagreement with an adjudicative determination by the agency of original jurisdiction(AOJ) as a Notice of Disagreement (NOD) only if it is submitted on a standardized form provided by VA for the purpose of appealing the decision, in cases where such a form is provided. Although a standardized NOD form will only initially be provided in connection with decisions on compensation claims, VA may require a standard NOD form for any type of claim for VA benefits if, in the future, it develops and provides a standardized NOD form for a particular benefit. The purpose of these amendments is to improve the quality and timeliness of the processing of veterans' claims for benefits by standardizing the claims and appeals processes through the use of forms.