Commonwealth Consolidated Acts

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VETERANS' ENTITLEMENTS ACT 1986 - SECT 148

Procedure of Board

             (1)  The Principal Member shall, upon receipt of the relevant documents relating to a review of a decision of the Commission, cause to be served on each party to the review a notice informing the party that the Board is to review the decision of the Commission and requesting the party to inform the Principal Member, in writing, within a reasonable time specified in the notice, whether the party wishes to appear on the hearing of the review and, if the party wishes so to appear, whether the party intends to appear on the hearing personally or by another person under section 147.

             (2)  Where either party to a review of a decision of the Commission informs the Principal Member that the party wishes to appear on the hearing of the review of the decision by the Board, the Principal Member shall:

                     (a)  cause a date, time and place to be fixed for the hearing of the review; and

                     (b)  cause notice of the date, time and place so fixed to be served on each party to the review.

             (3)  The Principal Member may defer fixing a date, time and place for the hearing of a review under subsection (2) until the parties to the review have informed the Principal Member that they are ready to proceed at a hearing.

             (4)  Where a party to a review of a decision of the Commission does not inform the Principal Member, within the time specified in the notice served on the party under subsection (1), that the party wishes to appear on the hearing of the review, the review may be heard and determined in the absence of that party.

          (4A)  A member may hold a directions hearing in relation to a review.

          (4B)  Before the hearing of a review has commenced, a member, the National Registrar, a Registrar, a Deputy Registrar or a Conference Registrar may give directions, not inconsistent with subsections (1), (2), (3) and (4) or directions under subsection 142(2), in relation to the procedure to be followed in connection with the review. Without limiting this subsection, a direction may:

                     (a)  require any person who is a party to the review to provide further information in relation to the review; or

                     (b)  require the Commission to provide a statement of the grounds on which the application will be resisted at the hearing of the review; or

                     (c)  require any person who is a party to the review to provide a statement of matters or contentions upon which reliance is intended to be placed at the hearing of the review.

             (5)  The Principal Member:

                     (a)  may give general directions, not inconsistent with subsections (1), (2), (3) and (4) or directions under subsection 142(2), as to the procedure of the Board with respect to reviews before it, including reviews the hearings of which have not been commenced; and

                     (b)  may give directions, not inconsistent with subsections (1), (2), (3) and (4) or directions under subsection 142(2), as to the procedure of the Board with respect to a particular review before the Board, either before or after the hearing of the review has commenced.

          (5A)  The power of the Principal Member under subsection (5) includes the power to give directions:

                     (a)  as to the manner of communication of documents, including electronic documents, that are required or permitted to be communicated to the Board; and

                     (b)  as to the time at which such documents are to be taken to have been so communicated.

          (5B)  Without limiting the documents to which subsection (5A) applies, those documents include:

                     (a)  documents, comments and supplementary reports forwarded to the Principal Member under subsection 137(4); and

                     (b)  notices given to the Principal Member by a party to a review of a decision for the purposes of section 148; and

                     (c)  documents produced to the Board under section 151 for the purposes of the hearing of a review Board; and

                     (d)  further documents and reports of investigations or examinations forwarded to the Board as a consequence of a request made under subsection 152(1); and

                     (e)  documents withdrawing or discontinuing applications for review communicated to the Board under subsection 155(2).

             (6)  The presiding member in respect of a particular review may, in respect of a matter not dealt with by directions under subsection (5), give directions, not inconsistent with subsections (1), (2), (3) and (4) or directions under subsection 142(2), as to the procedure to be followed on a hearing of the review, either before or after the hearing of the review has commenced.

          (6A)  The Principal Member may, in relation to a review, request the Secretary:

                     (a)  to give to the Principal Member further documents in the Secretary's custody; or

                     (b)  to obtain, and give to the Principal Member, further documents; or

                     (c)  to arrange for the making of any investigation or medical examination and to give to the Principal Member a report of the investigation or examination.

             (7)  In giving a direction or making a request under this section, the Principal Member or a presiding member must have regard to the objective in section 133A.

             (8)  A member holding a directions hearing or the Board in the hearing of a review may allow a person to participate by:

                     (a)  telephone; or

                     (b)  closed-circuit television; or

                     (c)  any other means of communication.

             (9)  In a review of a decision of the Commission, the Commission must use its best endeavours to assist the Board to make a decision in relation to the review.



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