On January 6, 2011, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) launched an internet website for the VA fiduciary program. The VA states that this launch is only the first phase of the internet site and was designed to provide fiduciaries and other interested parties with information regarding VA’s fiduciary program.

A VA fiduciary has significant responsibility: he or she is responsible for managing the beneficiary’s VA income, utilizing the funds for the beneficiary’s daily needs and ensuring that the beneficiary’s debts are paid. Thus, the new website is a step in the right direction. Efforts by the agency to assist VA fiduciaries understand and perform their duties properly is welcome.

At this time, the site seems to provide rather basic information, including a list of the responsibilities of a fiduciary, information on becoming a fiduciary, and links to forms and other useful tools. The VA promises that future releases will include instructions on accountings and program updates pertinent to fiduciaries.

I found the site to be useful in that there are links to some good reference materials. For example, the section of the VA Claims Adjudication Manual M21-1MR pertaining to fiduciaries is posted: Fiduciary Manual (M21-1MR, Part XI).

The website can be found at: http://www.vba.va.gov/bln/21/Fiduciary/index.htm.

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