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8 20.305 Rule 305. Computation of time $8 20.307–20.399 (Reserved)

limit for filing. (a) Acceptance of postmark date. When Subpart E-Administrative these Rules require that any written

Appeals document be filed within a specified period of time, a response postmarked $20.400 Rule 400. Action by claimant prior to expiration of the applicable

or representative on notification of time limit will be accepted as having

administrative appeal. been timely filed. In the event that the When an official of the Department postmark is not of record, the post- of Veterans Affairs enters an adminismark date will be presumed to be five trative appeal, the claimant and his or days prior to the date of receipt of the her representative, if any, are notified document by the Department of Vet- and given a period of 60 days from the erans Affairs. In calculating this 5-day date of mailing of the letter of notifiperiod, Saturdays, Sundays and legal

ind legal cation to join in the administrative apholidays will be excluded.

peal. The date of mailing of the letter (b) Computation of time limit. In com

of notification will be presumed to be

the same as the date of the letter of noputing the time limit for filing a written document, the first day of the spec

tification. If the claimant, or the repified period will be excluded and the

resentative acting on his or her behalf. last day included. Where the time limit

elects to join in the administrative apwould expire on a Saturday, Sunday, or

peal, it becomes a “merged appeal” and legal holiday, the next succeeding

the rules governing an appeal initiated

by a claimant are for application. The workday will be included in the com

presentation of evidence or argument putation.

by the claimant or his or her represent(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7105)

ative in response to notification of the

right to join in the administrative ap$ 20.306 Rule 306. Legal holidays. peal will be construed as an election to

For the purpose of Rule 305 (820.305 of join in the administrative appeal. If this part), the legal holidays, in addi

the claimant does not authorize the tion to any other day appointed as a

merger, he or she must hold such eviholiday by the President or the Con

dence or argument in abeyance until gress of the United States, are as fol

resolution of the administrative aplows: New Year's Day-January 1; In

peal. auguration Day-January 20 of every (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7106) fourth year or, if the 20th falls on a

cceeding day se- 820.401 Rule 401. Effect of decision on lected for public observance of the in

administrative or merged appeal on

claimant's appellate rights. auguration; Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.-Third Monday in January; (a) Merged appeal. If the administraWashington's Birthday-Third Monday tive appeal is merged, the appellate de in February; Memorial Day-Last Mon cision on the merged appeal will conday in May; Independence Day-July 4; stitute final disposition of the claimLabor Day-First Monday in Sep- ant's appellate rights. tember; Columbus Day-Second Mon- (b) Appeal not merged. If the claimant day in October; Veterans Day-Novem- does not authorize merger, normal apber 11; Thanksgiving Day-Fourth pellate rights on the same issue are Thursday in November; and Christmas preserved, and the Chairman will asDay-December 25. When a holiday oc

sign the proceeding to a Member or curs on a Saturday, the Friday imme

panel of Members of the Board who did diately before is the legal public holi

not make the decision on the adminis

trative appeal. The period of time from day. When a holiday occurs on a Sunday, the Monday immediately after is

the date of notification to the claimant

of the administrative appeal to the the legal public holiday.

date of the Board's decision on the ad(Authority: 5 U.S.C. 6103)

ministrative appeal is not chargeable

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to the claimant for purposes of deter- the Case is furnished by the agency of mining the time limit for perfecting original jurisdiction in a simultahis or her separate appeal.

neously contested claim, a period of 30 (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7106)

days from the date of mailing of the

Supplemental Statement of the Case (57 FR 4109, Feb. 3, 1992, as amended at 61 FR 20450, May 7, 1996)

will be allowed for response, but the re

ceipt of a Supplemental Statement of 88 20.402–20.499 [Reserved]

the Case will not extend the time al

lowed for filing a Substantive Appeal Subpart F-Simultaneously as set forth in paragraph (b) of this secContested Claims

tion. The date of mailing of the Supple

mental Statement of the Case will be 8 20.500 Rule 500. Who can file an ap presumed to be the same as the date of peal in simultaneously contested

the Supplemental Statement of the claims.

Case for purposes of determining In a simultaneously contested claim, whether a response has been timely any claimant or representative of a filed. Provided a Substantive Appeal claimant may file a Notice of Disagree

has been timely filed in accordance ment or Substantive Appeal within the

with paragraph (b) of this section, the time limits set out in Rule 501 (820.501

response to a Supplemental Statement of this part).

of the Case is optional and is not re(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7105(b)(2), 7105A)

quired for the perfection of an appeal,

unless the Supplemental Statement of 8 20.501 Rule 501. Time limits for filing

the Case covers issues that were not inNotice of Disagreement, Substantive Appeal, and response to

cluded in the original Statement of the Supplemental Statement of the

Case. If a Supplemental Statement of Case in simultaneously contested the Case covers issues that were not inclaims.

cluded in the original Statement of the (a) Notice of Disagreement. In simulta Case, a Substantive Appeal must be neously contested claims, the Notice of filed with respect to those issues withDisagreement from the person ad in 30 days of the date of mailing of the versely affected must be filed within 60 Supplemental Statement of the Case in days from the date of mailing of the order to perfect an appeal with respect notification of the determination to to the additional issues. him or her; otherwise, that determination will become final. The date of (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7105(d)(3), 7105A(b)) mailing of the letter of notification will be presumed to be the same as the

$ 20.502 Rule 502. Time limit for redate of that letter for purposes of de

sponse to appeal by another contermining whether a Notice of Dis

testing party in a simultaneously agreement has been timely filed.

contested claim.

A party to a simultaneously con(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7105A(a))

tested claim may file a brief or argu(b) Substantive Appeal. In the case of ment in answer to a Substantive Apsimultaneously contested claims, a peal filed by another contesting party. Substantive Appeal must be filed with Any such brief or argument must be in 30 days from the date of mailing of filed with the agency of original juristhe Statement of the Case. The date of diction within 30 days from the date mailing of the Statement of the Case the content of the Substantive Appeal will be presumed to be the same as the is furnished as provided in 8 19.102 of date of the Statement of the Case for

this chapter. Such content will be prepurposes of determining whether an ap

sumed to have been furnished on the peal has been timely filed.

date of the letter that accompanies the

content. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7105A(b)) (c) Supplemental Statement of the Case.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7105A(b)) Where a Supplemental Statement of (66 FR 60153, Dec. 3, 2001)

$ 20.503 Rule 503. Extension of time for

filing a Substantive Appeal in simultaneously contested claims. An extension of the 30-day period to file a Substantive Appeal in simultaneously contested claims may be granted if good cause is shown. In granting an extension, consideration will be given to the interests of the other parties involved. A request for such an extension must be in writing and must be made prior to expiration of the time limit for filing the Substantive Appeal. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7105A(b))

$ 20.504 Rule 504. Notices sent to last

addresses of record in simulta

neously contested claims. Notices in simultaneously contested claims will be forwarded to the last address of record of the parties concerned and such action will constitute sufficient evidence of notice. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7105A(b)) 88 20.505–20.599 (Reserved)

Subpart G-Representation

an appellant must execute a VA Form 21-22, “Appointment of Veterans Serv. ice Organization as Claimant's Rep resentative." This form gives the organization power of attorney to represent the appellant. The designation will be effective when it is received by the agency of original jurisdiction or, if the appellate record has been certified to the Board for review, by the Board of Veterans' Appeals. A properly filed designation made prior to appeal will continue to be honored, unless it has been revoked by the appellant or unless the representative has properly withdrawn. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7105(b)(2)) $20.603 Rule 603. Representation by

attorneys-at-law. (a) Designation. An attorney-at-law may be designated as an appellant's representative through a properly executed VA Form 22a, “Appointment of Attorney or Agent as Claimant's Representative." This form gives the attorney power of attorney to represent the appellant. In lieu thereof, an attorney may state in writing on his or her letterhead that he or she is authorized to represent the appellant in order to have access to information in the appellant's file pertinent to the particular claim presented. For an attorney to have complete access to all information in an individual's records, the attorney must provide a signed consent from the appellant or the appellant's guardian. Such consent shall be equivalent to an executed power of attorney. The designation must be of an individual attorney, rather than a firm or partnership. An appellant may limit an attorney's right to act as his or her representative in an appeal to representation with respect to a specific claim for one or more specific benefits by noting the restriction in the written designation. Unless specifically noted to the contrary, however, designations of an attorney as a representative will extend to all matters with respect to claims for benefits under laws administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs. Designations are effective when they are received by the agency of original jurisdiction or, if the appellate record has been certified to the Board for review, by the Board

CROSS-REFERENCE: In cases involving access to medical records relating to drug abuse, alcoholism, alcohol abuse, sickle cell anemia, or infection with the human immunodeficiency virus, also see 38 U.S.C. 7332. 8 20.600 Rule 600. Right to representa

tion. An appellant will be accorded full right to representation in all stages of an appeal by a recognized organization, attorney, agent, or other authorized person. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 5901–5905, 7105(a))

8 20.601 Rule 601. Only one representa

tive recognized. A specific claim may be prosecuted at any one time by only one recognized organization, attorney, agent or other person properly designated to represent the appellant. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7105(b)(2))

$ 20.602 Rule 602. Representation by

recognized organizations. In order to designate a recognized or ganization as his or her representative,

of Veterans Appeals. A properly filed in the case. The consent must be filed designation made prior to appeal will with the agency of original jurisdiction continue to be honored, unless it has or, if the appellate record has been cerbeen revoked or unless the representa- tified to the Board for review, with the tive has properly withdrawn. Legal in Board of Veterans' Appeals. The preterns, law students, and paralegals siding Member at a hearing on appeal may not be independently accredited to may require that not more than one atrepresent appellants under this Rule. torney participate in the examination

(b) Attorneys employed by recognized of any one witness or impose other reaorganization. A recognized organization sonable limitations to ensure orderly may employ an attorney-at-law to rep conduct of the hearing. resent an appellant. If the attorney so

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 5901, 5904) employed is not an accredited representative of the recognized organiza

(57 FR 4109, Feb. 3, 1992, as amended at 61 FR

20450, May 7, 1996) tion, the signed consent of the appellant for the substitution of representa $20.604 Rule 604. Representation by tives must be obtained and submitted agents. to the agency of original jurisdiction

(a) Designation. The designation of an or, if the appellate record has been cer

agent will be by a duly executed power tified to the Board for review, to the

of attorney, VA Form 22a, “AppointBoard of Veterans' Appeals. When the

ment of Attorney or Agent as Claimsigned consent is received by the agen

ant's Representative," or its equivacy of original jurisdiction or the Board,

lent. The designation must be of an inas applicable, the attorney will be rec

dividual, rather than a firm or partnerognized as the appellant's representa

ship. The designation will be effective tive in lieu of the organization.

when it is received by the agency of (c) Participation of associated or affili

original jurisdiction or, if the appellate ated attorneys. With the specific writ

record has been certified to the Board ten consent of the appellant, an attor

for review, by the Board of Veterans' ney associated or affiliated with the

Appeals. A properly filed designation appellant's attorney of record, includ

made prior to appeal will continue to ing an attorney employed by the same

be honored, unless it has been revoked legal services office as the attorney of

or unless the representative has proprecord, may assist in representation of

erly withdrawn. the appellant and may have access to

(b) Admission to practice. The provithe appellant's Department of Veterans

sions of 38 U.S.C. 5904 and of $ 14.629(b) Affairs records to the same extent as

of this chapter are applicable to the adthe attorney of record. Unless revoked

mission of agents to practice before the by the appellant, such consent will re

Department of Veterans Affairs. Aumain effective in the event the original

thority for making determinations attorney of record is replaced by an

concerning admission to practice rests other attorney who is a member of the

with the General Counsel of the Desame law firm or an attorney employed

partment of Veterans Affairs, and any by the same legal services office. The

questions concerning admissions to consent must include the name of the

practice should be addressed to: Office veteran; the name of the appellant if

of the General Counsel (022A), Departother than the veteran (e.g., a vet

ment of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont eran's survivor, a guardian, or a fidu

Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20420. ciary appointed to receive VA benefits on an individual's behalf); the applica (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 5904) ble Department of Veterans Affairs file (57 FR 4109, Feb. 3, 1992, as amended at 61 FR number; the name of the attorney of 20450, May 7, 1996) record; the consent of the appellant for the use of the services of the associated $20.605 Rule 60

8 20.605 Rule 605. Other persons as or affiliated attorney and for that indi

representative. vidual to have access to applicable De- (a) Scope of rule. This section applies partment of Veterans Affairs records; to representation other than by a recand the name of the associated or af- ognized organization, an agent admitfiliated attorney who will be assisting ted to practice before the Department

or unless the representative has properly withdrawn.

(d) Representation of more than one appellant. An individual recognized as an appellant's representative under this Rule may represent only one appellant. If an individual has been recognized as a representative for one appellant and wishes to represent another appellant, he or she must obtain permission to do so from the Office of the General Counsel as provided in $14.630 of this chapter. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 5903) (57 FR 4109, Feb. 3, 1992, as amended at 61 FR 20450, May 7, 1996)

of Veterans Affairs, or an attorney-atlaw.

(b) Who may act as representative. Any competent person may be recognized as a representative for a particular claim, unless that person has been barred from practice before the Department of Veterans Affairs.

(c) Designation. The designation of an individual to act as an appellant's representative may be made by executing a VA Form 22a, “Appointment of Attorney or Agent as Claimant's Representative.” This form gives the individual power of attorney to represent the appellant in all matters pertaining to the presentation and prosecution of claims for any and all benefits under laws administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs. In lieu of using the form, the designation may be by a written document signed by both the appellant and the individual representative, which may be in the form of a letter, which authorizes a named individual to act as the appellant's representative only with respect to a specific claim involving one or more specific benefits. The document must include the name of the veteran; the name of the appellant if other than the veteran (e.g., a veteran's survivor, a guardian, or a fiduciary appointed to receive VA benefits on an individual's behalf); the applicable Department of Veterans Affairs file number; the appellant's consent for the individual representative to have access to his or her Department of Veterans Affairs records; the name of the individual rep resentative; a description of the specific claim for benefits to which the designation of representation applies; and a certification that no compensation will be charged or paid for the individual representative's services. The designation, in either form, must be filed with the agency of original jurisdiction or, if the appellate record has been certified to the Board for review, with the Board of Veterans' Appeals. The designation will be effective when it is received by the agency of original jurisdiction or, if the appellate record has been certified to the Board for review, by the Board of Veterans' Appeals. A properly filed designation made prior to appeal will continue to be honored, unless it has been revoked

$20.606 Rule 606. Legal interns, law

students and paralegals. (a) Consent of appellant. If it is contemplated that a legal intern, law student, or paralegal will assist in the appeal, written consent must be obtained from the appellant. The written consent must include the name of the veteran; the name of the appellant if other than the veteran (e.g., a veteran's survivor, a guardian, or a fiduciary appointed to receive VA benefits on an individual's behalf); the applicable Department of Veterans Affairs file number; the name of the attorney-at-law, the consent of the appellant for the use of the services of legal interns, law students, or paralegals and for such individuals to have access to applicable Department of Veterans Affairs records, and the names of the legal interns, law students, or paralegals who will be assisting in the case. In the case of appeals before the Board in Washington, DC, the signed consent must be submitted to: Director, Management and Administration (01E), Board of Veterans' Appeals, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20420. In the case of hearings before a Member or Members of the Board at Department of Veterans field facilities, the consent must be presented to the presiding Member of the hearing as noted in paragraph (d). Unless revoked by the appellant, such consent will remain elfective in the event the original attorney of record is replaced by another attorney who is a member of the same law firm or another attorney employed by the same legal services office.

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