Recognition of Tribal Organizations for Representation of VA Claimants
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is proposing to amend its regulations concerning recognition of certain national, State, and regional or local organizations for purposes of VA claims representation. Specifically, this rulemaking would allow the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to recognize tribal organizations in a similar manner as the Secretary recognizes State organizations. The proposed rule would allow a tribal organization that is established and funded by one or more tribal governments to be recognized for the purpose of providing assistance on VA benefit claims. In addition, the proposed rule would allow an employee of a tribal government to become accredited through a recognized State organization in a similar manner as a County Veterans' Service Officer (CVSO) may become accredited through a recognized State organization. The intended effect of this proposed rule is to improve access of Native American veterans to VA-recognized organizations and VA- accredited individuals who may assist them on their benefit claims.