The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has made final its proposed “VA Claims and Appeals Modernization” rules, which amend the claims adjudication, appeals, and Rules of Practice of the Board of Veterans’ Appeals (Board) regulations. In addition, this rule revises the VA’s regulations with respect to accreditation of attorneys, agents, and Veterans Service Organization (VSO) representatives; the standards of conduct for persons practicing before the VA; and the rules governing fees for representation. 84 Fed. Reg. 138 (Jan. 18, 2019).
This rulemaking implements the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act of 2017 (AMA), which amended the procedures applicable to administrative review and appeal of VA decisions on claims for benefits, creating a new, modernized review system. The VA amends its regulations applicable to all claims processed under the new review system, which generally applies where an initial VA decision on a claim is provided on or after the effective date or where a claimant has elected to opt into the new review system under established procedures.
The final rules went into effect February 19, 2019.