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Agency Information Collection Activities Under OMB Review

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Office of General Counsel, Department of Veterans Affairs.




In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995 (44 U.S.C., 3501 et seq.), this notice announces that the Office of General Counsel (OGC), Department of Veterans Affairs, has submitted the collection of information abstracted below to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and comment. The PRA submission describes the nature of the information collection and its expected cost and burden; it includes the actual data collection instrument.


Comments mut be submitted on or before May 21, 2003.

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Denise McLamb, Information Management Service (045A4), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20420, (202) 273-8030 or FAX (202) 273-5981 or e-mail: Please refer to “OMB Control No. 2900-0018.”

Send comments and recommendations concerning any aspect of the information collection to VA's OMB Desk Officer, OMB Human Resources and Housing Branch, New Executive Office Building, Room 10235, Washington, DC 20503 (202) 395-7316. Please refer to “OMB Control No. 2900-0018” in any correspondence.

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a. Application for Accreditation as Service Organization Representative, VA Form 21.

b. Appointment of individuals as Claimant's Representative, VA Form 22a.

OMB Control Number: 2900-0018.

Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Abstract: VA Form 21 is used to obtain basic information necessary to determine whether an individual may be accredited as a service organization representative for the purposes of representation of claimants before the VA. The information is used to evaluate qualifications, ensure against conflicts of interest, and allow appropriate organization officials to certify the character and qualifications applicants. It is designed to ensure that regulatory standards for accreditation have been met so that claimants for VA benefits have available a pool of qualified claims representatives to assist them in the preparation, presentation, and prosecution of their claims.

VA Form 22a is used by a claimant for VA benefits to confer power of attorney upon an attorney, agent, or individual service organization representative in order that the attorney, agent, or individual representative may represent Start Printed Page 19606the claimant in proceedings before VA. Generally, this power of attorney permits VA to release to the attorney, agent, or individual representative records pertinent to the benefit claim. The form contains a release to be completed by the claimant, which permits the claimant to authorize or prohibit VA from disclosing medical records specifically protected by 38 U.S.C. 7332.

An agency may not conducted or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. The Federal Register notice with a 60-day comment period soliciting comments on this collection of information was published on December 17, 2002, at page 77320.

Affected Public: Individuals or households, Business or other for-profit, Not-for-profit institutions, and State, Local or Tribal Government.

Estimated Annual Burden:

a. VA Form 21—600 hours.

b. VA Form 22a—1,600 hours.

Estimated Average Burden Per Respondent:

a. VA Form 21—15 minutes.

b. VA Form 22a—15 minutes.

Frequency of Response: On occasion.

Estimated Number of Respondents:

a. VA Form 21—2,400.

b. VA Form 22a—6,400.

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Dated: April 7, 2003.

By direction of the Secretary:

Loise Russell,

Acting Director, Records Management Service.

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[FR Doc. 03-9359 Filed 4-18-03; 8:45 am]