Summary

3/6/2014--Introduced.21st Century Veterans Benefits Delivery Act - Revises or adds provisions concerning the submission of veterans' claims for benefits administered through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), including... Read More

Status

This bill was introduced on Mar 6, 2014, in a previous session of Congress, but was not passed.

Bill Text

A BILL

To amend title 38, United States Code, to improve the processing by the Department of Veterans Affairs of claims for benefits under laws administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

(a) Short Title.--This Act may be cited as the ``21st Century Veterans Benefits Delivery Act''. (b) Table of Contents.--The table of contents for this Act is as follows:

Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents. TITLE I--BENEFITS CLAIMS SUBMISSION

Sec. 101. Modification of Transition Assistance Program to enable online participation. Sec. 102. Requirement to encourage claimants to use appropriate forms. Sec. 103. Required communications to users of eBenefits Internet website. Sec. 104. Extension of authority for retroactive date of awards for filing fully developed claims. Sec. 105. Requirement that decisions on claims explain benefits of filing appeals within 180 days. Sec. 106. Requirement to use Department of Veterans Affairs form 21- 0958 in regional offices for filing of notices of disagreement. Sec. 107. Determination of manner of appearance for hearings before Board of Veterans' Appeals. TITLE II--PRACTICES OF REGIONAL OFFICES

Sec. 201. Required Comptroller General audit of regional offices of Veterans Benefits Administration. Sec. 202. Study on service-connected disabilities that worsen with age. Sec. 203. Improvements to authority for performance of medical disabilities examinations by contract physician. Sec. 204. Improvement of mail processing by Department of Veterans Affairs. Sec. 205. Review...

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Nation

25 Supporting
2 Opposing
93% 7%

State: CA

1 Supporting
0 Opposing
100% 0%

District: 1st

0 Supporting
0 Opposing
0% 0%

Popularity Trend

Organizations Supporting

Dear Senator Heller and Senator Casey, On behalf of the Association of the United States Navy (AUSN), we applaud and support your bill S. 2091, the 21st Century Veterans Benefits Delivery Act, which would greatly improve upon the ability of those who have served our nation to receive the care to which they are entitled. It is imperative that the systems designed to deliver such care and benefits work effectively, and allow for those who so badly need these benefits are not encumbered by an outdated and inefficient system. It’s no secret that the Department of Veterans Affairs has been having problems addressing the claims backlog that it hopes to have down to zero by 2015. In some cases, the VA still utilizes an outdated process to address these claims, ranging from systemic issues with the back-and-forth of how claims are handled, to the absurd 9 to 18 month waiting game. Our Veterans deserve better and they deserve the best quality service our nation has to offer. Earlier this year, you created the Senate VA Backlog Working Group to address just this concern and produce a report on findings regarding the status of the VA’s backlog. The VA Backlog Working Group 2014 Report provides an analysis of the current VA claims system, and offers a more lucid understanding of the problematic aspects of the VA claims system that have made it possible for the VA claims backlog to grow. S. 2091 is structured accordingly to address the problems and concerns within the 2014 Report. Title I of your bill, the Benefits Claims Submission section, is designed to educate and assist, on the benefits of submitting a claim. It includes provisions to help improve Veterans’ access to information regarding the claims process, and provides monetary benefits to serve as incentives for developing improved claims submissions. Title II of the bill reforms the practices of VA regional offices in such a way that improves accountability and oversight along with increased transparency on the size and scope of the state of the backlog. Finally, Title III is designed to ensure that the Federal government prioritizes the claims process and requires Federal agencies operate in a more cooperative manner in sharing requested information. It also incentivizes employees to process claims information in a timely and expedient fashion. Thank you for taking an active role in such an important issue to the military and Veteran communities and introducing legislation to improve the VA claims process so that no Veteran is left behind. If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact me at 703-548-5800.

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A bill to amend title 38, United States Code, to improve the processing by the Department of Veterans Affairs of claims for benefits under laws administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, and for other purposes.

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“The 21st Century Veterans Benefits Delivery Act is a practical, common sense blueprint to help veterans get their earned benefits more quickly. The bill will help reduce the VA claims backlog, improve reporting and transparency, foster quality outcomes and further cooperation of other Federal agencies with the VA on veterans claims,” said VADM Norb Ryan, USN-ret., President of the Military Officers Association of America. “We are particularly pleased that Sen. Heller’s office worked closely with service organizations including MOAA to craft the recommendations in the bill.” http://www.casey.senate.gov/newsroom/releases/casey-heller-unveil-va-backlog-report-legislation

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Organizations Opposing

No organizations opposing yet.

Users Supporting

I support The 21st Century Veterans Benefits Delivery Act because... our veterans deserve the BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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NC
6
StratoCruiser
NC-6
10 months ago

I support The 21st Century Veterans Benefits Delivery Act because...I'm presently in the process of filing a claim. The VA needs support in processing claims. My regional office is receiving more claims per month than they process. Send help!

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FL
11
jackshealth
FL-11
10 months ago

Users Opposing

No constituents opposing yet.

Bill Summary

3/6/2014--Introduced.21st Century Veterans Benefits Delivery Act - Revises or adds provisions concerning the submission of veterans' claims for benefits administered through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), including by: -modifying the Transition Assistance Program to enable online participation; - adding a requirement to encourage claimants to use appropriate forms; - requiring specified communications to users of the eBenefits website; -extending through FY2020 VA authority for the retroactive dating of awards upon the filing of fully developed claims; -requiring claim decisions to explain the benefits of filing claim appeals within 180 days; -requiring the use of a specified VA form in regional offices for filing notices of disagreement with claim decisions; and -requiring hearings before the Board of Veterans' Appeals to be conducted, as the Board considers appropriate or, upon request by an appellant, as the appellant considers appropriate, in person or through picture and voice transmission by electronic or other means. Revises or adds provisions concerning the practices of VA regional offices, including by: - requiring the Comptroller General to complete an audit of Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) regional offices, -requiring the VA Secretary to complete a study on service-connected disabilities that worsen with age, -extending the authority for the performance of medical disability examinations by contract physicians, - requiring the Secretary to develop and implement a plan to establish a uniform mail processing and scanning system throughout the regional offices, -requiring the VA Inspector General to conduct a review of the practices of regional offices regarding the use of suspense dates during the disability claim assessment process, -requiring the Secretary to submit semiannual reports on progress in implementing the Veterans Benefits Management System, -requiring the Secretary to submit an annual report on VBA capacity to process benefits claims, - requiring the Secretary to include in each Monday Morning Workload Report the number of claims for benefits that have been received by a regional office and that are pending a decision, and - requiring the Secretary to make the VA reports entitled "Appeals Pending" and "Appeals Workload By Station" available to the public on a VA website. Requires the Secretary of Defense (DOD), the Commissioner of Social Security, and the Archivist of the United States to appoint individuals to act as liaisons with the VA to expedite the timely provision to the VA Secretary of information required to process veterans benefits claims. Requires the DOD and VA Secretaries to jointly submit a report that sets forth a time line with milestones for achieving interoperability between DOD's and VA's electronic health records systems.

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