(a)All questions in a matter which under section
511(a) of this title is subject to decision by the Secretary shall be subject to one review on appeal to the Secretary. Final decisions on such appeals shall be made by the Board. Decisions of the Board shall be based on the entire record in the proceeding and upon consideration of all evidence and material of record and applicable provisions of law and regulation.
(b)Except as provided in section
5108 of this title, when a claim is disallowed by the Board, the claim may not thereafter be reopened and allowed and a claim based upon the same factual basis may not be considered.
(c)The Board shall be bound in its decisions by the regulations of the Department, instructions of the Secretary, and the precedent opinions of the chief legal officer of the Department.
(d)Each decision of the Board shall include—
(1)a written statement of the Board’s findings and conclusions, and the reasons or bases for those findings and conclusions, on all material issues of fact and law presented on the record; and
(2)an order granting appropriate relief or denying relief.
(1)After reaching a decision on a case, the Board shall promptly mail a copy of its written decision to the claimant at the last known address of the claimant.
(2)If the claimant has an authorized representative, the Board shall—
(A)mail a copy of its written decision to the authorized representative at the last known address of the authorized representative; or
(B)send a copy of its written decision to the authorized representative by any means reasonably likely to provide the authorized representative with a copy of the decision within the same time a copy would be expected to reach the authorized representative if sent by first-class mail.
1996—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 104–275amended subsec. (e) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (e) read as follows: “After reaching a decision in a case, the Board shall promptly mail a copy of its written decision to the claimant and the claimant’s authorized representative (if any) at the last known address of the claimant and at the last known address of such representative (if any).”
Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 102–40, § 402(d)(1), substituted “5108” for “3008”.
Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 102–83, § 4(c), substituted “chief legal officer of the Department” for “chief law officer”.
Pub. L. 102–83, § 4(b)(1), (2)(E), substituted “Secretary” for “Administrator”.
Pub. L. 102–83, § 4(a)(3), (4), substituted “Department” for “Veterans’ Administration”.
1988—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 100–687, § 101(b), as amended by Pub. L. 102–54, substituted “All questions in a matter which under section
211(a) of this title is subject to decision by the Administrator” for “All questions on claims involving benefits under the laws administered by the Veterans’ Administration”.
Pub. L. 100–687, § 203(a), inserted at end “The Board shall decide any such appeal only after affording the claimant an opportunity for a hearing. Decisions of the Board shall be based on the entire record in the proceeding and upon consideration of all evidence and material of record and applicable provisions of law and regulation.”
Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 100–687, § 204, amended subsec. (b) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (b) read as follows: “When a claim is disallowed by the Board, it may not thereafter be reopened and allowed, and no claim based upon the same factual basis shall be considered; however, where subsequent to disallowance of a claim, new and material evidence in the form of official reports from the proper service department is secured, the Board may authorize the reopening of the claim and review of the former decision.”
Subsecs. (d), (e). Pub. L. 100–687, § 205, added subsecs. (d) and (e) and struck out former subsec. (d) which read as follows: “The decisions of the Board shall be in writing and shall contain findings of fact and conclusions of law separately stated.”
Amendment by sections 101(b) and 204 ofPub. L. 100–687effective Sept. 1, 1989, and amendment by sections 203(a) and 205 ofPub. L. 100–687effective Jan. 1, 1989, see section 401(a), (d) ofPub. L. 100–687, as amended, set out as an Effective Date note under section
7251 of this title.
Effective Date of 1961 Amendment
Pub. L. 87–97, § 2,July 20, 1961, 75 Stat. 215, provided that: “The amendment made by this Act [amending this section] shall take effect as of January 1, 1962.”
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