(a) Sections 1.600 through 1.603 establish policy, assign responsibilities and prescribe procedures with respect to:
(1) When, and under what circumstances, VA will grant authorized claimants' representatives read-only access to the automated Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) claims records of those claimants whom they represent;
(2) The exercise of authorized access by claimants' representatives; and
(3) The bases and procedures for disqualification of a representative for violating any of the requirements for access.
(b) VBA will grant access to its automated claimants' claims records from locations outside Regional Offices under the following conditions. Access will be provided:
(1) Only to individuals and organizations granted access to automated claimants' records under §§ 1.600 through 1.603;
(2) Only to the claims records of VA claimants whom the organization or individual represents as reflected in the claims file;
(3) Solely for the purpose of the representative assisting the individual claimant whose records are accessed in a claim for benefits administered by VA; and
(4) On a read-only basis. Individuals authorized access to VBA automated claims records under §§ 1.600 through 1.603 will not be permitted to modify the data.
(c) (1) Access will be authorized only to the inquiry commands of the Benefits Delivery Network which provide access to the following categories of data:
(i) Beneficiary identification data such as name, social security number, sex, date of birth, service number and related service data; and
(ii) Claims history and processing data such as folder location, claim status, claim establishment date, claim processing history, award data, rating data, including service-connected medical conditions, income data, dependency data, deduction data, payment data, educational facility and program data (except chapter 32 benefits), and education program contribution and delimiting data (except chapter 32 benefits).
(2) Access to this information will currently be through the inquiry commands of BINQ (BIRLS (Beneficiaries Identification and Records Location Subsystem) Inquiry), SINQ (Status Inquiry), MINQ (Master Record Inquiry), PINQ (Pending Issue Inquiry) and TINQ (Payment History Inquiry). The identifying information received from BIRLS to representative inquiries will be limited to file number, veteran's name, date of death, folder location and transfer date of folder, insurance number, insurance type, insurance lapse date and insurance folder jurisdiction.
(d) Sections 1.600 through 14.603 are not intended to, and do not:
(1) Waive the sovereign immunity of the United States; or
(2) Create, and may not be relied upon to create, any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law against the United States or the Department of Veterans Affairs.
[59 FR 47084, Sept. 14, 1994. Redesignated and amended at 73 FR 29870, 29879, May 22, 2008]
Title 38 published on 2013-07-01
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