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  • Sunday, June 19, 2011 21:28
    Message # 625520
    Deleted user


    On November 9, 2000, the President signed into law The Veterans Claims Assistance Act of 2000 (VCAA or Act). See Pub. L. No. 106-475, 114 Stat. 2096 (2000). The VCAA:

    • Eliminates the requirement in 38 U.S.C. § 5107(a) that in order to earn the right to VA assistance in developing the pertinent evidence, a claimant must first submit enough evidence to make his or her claim "well grounded" -- thereby overruling longstanding precedents of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC);
    • Amends 38 U.S.C. § 5103 to require the VA, upon receipt of a "substantially complete application," to notify the claimant of any information or evidence necessary to substantiate the claim; and
    • Adds a new section, 38 U.S.C. § 5103A, requiring the VA to make "reasonable efforts to assist a claimant in obtaining evidence necessary to substantiate the claimant's claim." New sections 5103A(b), (c), and (d) specify that the VA must:
      • (1) make reasonable efforts to obtain relevant, non-federal records that the claimant identifies and authorizes the VA to obtain;
      • (2) continue to try to obtain existing service medical records and additional records in control of other federal agencies (unless it is discovered that the records do not exist or are unobtainable); and
      • (3) provide a medical examination and/or opinion if the VA finds the veteran has a current medical disability or symptoms and there is evidence to suggest that the current symptoms or disability may be related to an event, injury, or disease which took place in service;

    The Act mandates its application to any claim filed on or after the date of enactment, as well as to any claim filed before the date of enactment but not final as of the date of enactment. This means that the VCAA applies to all future claims and any claim pending as of November 9, 2000.

    The VCAA also gives individuals two years from November 9, 2000, to request that VA readjudicate claims denied as not well grounded which became final between July 14, 1999 and November 9, 2000. These claimants are advised to immediately contact their representative (usually a service officer). Requests for readjudication should promptly be filed with the local VA regional office.

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Welcoming home our men and women doesn't end after the crowd disperses, it MUST continue on for the life of the Veteran! They've served us, now we will serve them with programs that work so they reintegrate into society.

We are a national public benefit nonprofit organization that educates American Communities about best practices to serve Veterans.  We honor their service by empowering Veterans to apply their training and skills to successfully transition to productive careers and enterprises.

We provide free vocational training 24/7 to all of our members through our website, in addition to local events.  We believe the tenet that American Communities are the ultimate beneficiaries when Veterans claim their benefits and invest in productive endeavors.

The SWVBRC enlists the support of members of local Communities like you to increase Veteran awareness of the value of obtaining a VA card and receiving earned benefits.

Sponsorships, donations, volunteers and support from communities like yours enable us to reach out to Veterans and empower them to transition back into successful, productive enterprises that ultimately benefit all Americans and support future generations.

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