Summary: H.R.5088 — 113th Congress (2013-2014)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.5088. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in House (07/11/2014)

Responsive and Efficient Appeals Courts for Heroes Act of 2014 - Authorizes the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, acting as a panel or en banc, to hear class action appeals in accordance with specified procedures.

Allows one or more appellants to bring such a class action as the representative party on behalf of all members of such class if:

  • there is at least one question of law or fact common to the class,
  • the class is likely to consist of at least 50 members,
  • the resolution of the common questions of law or fact is likely to have a material effect on the claims of the members of the class, and
  • the representative party will fairly and adequately protect the interests of the class.

Gives an appellant 60 days after filing an appeal to file a motion with the Court to certify the appeal as a class action with respect to an issue that the appellant intends to raise. Allows the Court to waive such 60-day period for good cause shown.

Requires the Secretary of Veterans Affairs (VA), upon the filing of such motion, to: (1) make reasonable efforts to determine the approximate number of individuals with pending claims for benefits for whom class certification is sought, and (2) file a response.

Requires the Court, after the Secretary has filed such response, to determine by order whether to grant class certification with respect to an issue considered under the appeal and allow the appellant to act as the representative party of the class. Requires that order, if certification is granted, to: (1) define the class and issue for which the class is certified, and (2) appoint counsel for the class. Authorizes the Court, acting as a panel or en banc, to alter or amend an order before final judgement.

Requires the Court to include in the class only individuals who have, as of the date of the Court's entry of judgment on the class action, filed a claim that has not been finally resolved.

Allows the Court to stay the individual claims of class members during the period the Court is considering the class action.

Requires the Court to allow a veterans' organization to intervene in a class action appeal if the organization has an interest in the common questions of law or fact in the class action.

Requires the Court's permission before the appeal and a common issue of law or fact may be settled, voluntarily dismissed, compromised, or remanded by agreement.

Allows any member of the class, or an individual who would have been a member of the class if certification was granted, to appeal any decision of the Court to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

Sets the salary of the Court's judges at the rate applicable to federal appellate court judges. (Currently, their salary is set at the rate applicable to federal district court judges.)