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Notice

Agency Information Collection (Notice of Disagreement (NOD) (Pension, Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC), Burial and Accrued), VA Form 21P-0970) Activity Under OMB Review

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Veterans Benefits Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3521), this notice announces that the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), Department of Veterans Affairs, will submit 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.

DATES:

Comments must be submitted on or before October 3, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

Submit written comments on the collection of information through www.Regulations.gov, or to Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, Attn: VA Desk Officer; 725 17th St. NW., Washington, DC 20503 or sent through electronic mail to oira_submission@omb.eop.gov. Please refer to “OMB Control No. 2900-NEW, VA Form 21P-0970” in any correspondence.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Cynthia Harvey-Pryor, Enterprise Records Service (005R1B), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20420, (202) 461-5870 or email cynthia.harvey-pryor@va.gov. Please refer to “OMB Control No. 2900-NEW, VA Form 21P-0970.”

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Title: Notice of Disagreement (NOD) (Pension, Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC), Burial and Accrued).

OMB Control Number: 2900-NEW (To be assigned by OMB upon approval of the Information Collection Request).

Type of Review: New Collection (Request for a new OMB Control Number).

Abstract: The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), through its Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), administers an integrated program of benefits and services, established by law, for Veterans, service personnel, and their dependents and/or beneficiaries. Information is requested by this form under the authority of 38 U.S.C. 7105. The statute is codified at 38 CFR 20.201, 20.302, and 20.501.

The statute and regulations describe the process by which a claimant can appeal the decisions made by VBA on a claim for benefits.

VA Form 21P-0970 will be used by the claimant to initiate an appeal by indicating disagreement with a decision issued by a VA Regional Office (RO) specifically related to a claim for VA pension benefits, dependency and indemnity compensation (DIC) benefits, burial benefits, and accrued benefits. VA Form 21P-0970 will be the Start Printed Page 60415claimant's first step in the appeal process. The respondent may or may not continue with an appeal to the Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA). If the claimant opts to continue to BVA for an appeal, this form will be included in the claim folder as evidence.

VA will provide VA Form 21P-0970 to the claimant with the notification letter of the decision in paper form or via hyperlink to VA's Web site. The use of VA Form 21P-0970 will be mandatory when claimants initiate an appeal of a decision on a pension, DIC, burial, or accrued claims for benefits.

Currently, VBA does not have a mandatory form which would enable the claimant to initiate an appeal of a decision made regarding entitlement to pension, DIC, burial, or accrued benefits. As a result, claimants may provide their notice of disagreement in any format. The variety of submissions hampers efforts to identify, and process timely, the claimant's appeal. With the implementation of this collection, the submissions will be standardized, increasing efficiency.

An agency may not conduct 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 at 81 FR 12033 on May 23, 2016.

Affected Public: Individuals or households.

Estimated Annual Burden: 6,000 hours.

Estimated Average Burden per Respondent: 30 minutes.

Frequency of Response: One-time.

Estimated Number of Respondents: 12,000 respondents.

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By direction of the Secretary.

Cynthia Harvey-Pryor,

Program Specialist, Office of Privacy and Records Management, Department of Veterans Affairs.

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[FR Doc. 2016-21035 Filed 8-31-16; 8:45 am]

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