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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

SF 3321

as introduced - 89th Legislature (2015 - 2016) Posted on 03/30/2016 04:34pm

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.

Current Version - as introduced

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A bill for an act
relating to military veterans; providing certain disclosure requirements related
to veterans benefits services; requiring the commissioner of veterans affairs to
develop a disclosure statement; amending Minnesota Statutes 2014, section
196.05, subdivision 1; proposing coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes,
chapter 197.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2014, section 196.05, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

General duties.

The commissioner shall:

(1) act as the agent of a resident of the state having a claim against the United States
for benefits arising out of or by reason of service in the armed forces and prosecute the
claim without charge;

(2) act as custodian of veterans' bonus records;

(3) administer the laws relating to the providing of bronze flag holders at veterans'
graves for memorial purposes;

(4) administer the laws relating to recreational or rest camps for veterans so far
as applicable to state agencies;

(5) administer the state soldiers' assistance fund and veterans' relief fund and other
funds appropriated for the payment of bonuses or other benefits to veterans or for the
rehabilitation of veterans;

(6) cooperate with national, state, county, municipal, and private social agencies in
securing to veterans and their dependents the benefits provided by national, state, and
county laws, municipal ordinances, or public and private social agencies;

(7) provide necessary assistance where other adequate aid is not available to the
dependent family of a veteran while the veteran is hospitalized and after the veteran is
released for as long a period as is necessary as determined by the commissioner;

(8) act as the guardian, conservator, or representative payee of the estate for a minor
or an incompetent person receiving money from the United States government when
requested to do so by an agency of the United States of America provided sufficient
personnel are available;

(9) cooperate with United States governmental agencies providing compensation,
pensions, insurance, or other benefits provided by federal law, by supplementing the
benefits prescribed therein, when conditions in an individual case make it necessary;

(10) assist dependent family members of military personnel who are called from
reserve status to extended federal active duty during a time of war or national emergency
through the state soldiers' assistance fund provided by section 197.03;

(11) exercise other powers as may be authorized and necessary to carry out the
provisions of this chapter and chapter 197, consistent with that chapter; deleted text beginand
deleted text end

(12) provide information, referral, and counseling services to those veterans who
may have suffered adverse health conditions as a result of possible exposure to chemical
agentsdeleted text begin.deleted text endnew text begin; and
new text end

new text begin (13) in coordination with the Minnesota Association of County Veterans Service
Officers, develop a written disclosure statement for use by private providers of veterans
benefits services as required under section 197.6091. At a minimum, the written disclosure
statement shall include a signature line, contact information for the department, and a
statement that veterans benefits services are offered at no cost by federally chartered
veterans service organizations and by county veterans service officers.
new text end

Sec. 2.

new text begin [197.6091] VETERANS BENEFITS SERVICES; DISCLOSURE
REQUIREMENTS.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Definitions. new text end

new text begin (a) For purposes of this section, the following terms
have the meanings given.
new text end

new text begin (b)(1) "Advertising" or "advertisement" means any of the following:
new text end

new text begin (i) any written or printed communication made for the purpose of soliciting business
for veterans benefits appeal services, including but not limited to a brochure, letter,
pamphlet, newspaper, telephone listing, periodical, or other writing;
new text end

new text begin (ii) any directory listing caused or permitted by a person and made available by that
person indicating that veterans benefits appeal services are being offered; or
new text end

new text begin (iii) any radio, television, computer network, or similar airwave or electronic
transmission that solicits business for or promotes a person offering veterans benefits
appeal services.
new text end

new text begin (2) "Advertising" or "advertisement" does not include any of the following:
new text end

new text begin (i) any printing or writing used on buildings, uniforms, or badges, where the purpose
of the writing is for identification;
new text end

new text begin (ii) any printing or writing in a memorandum or other communication used in the
ordinary course of business where the sole purpose of the writing is other than soliciting
business for veterans benefits appeal services.
new text end

new text begin (c) "Veterans benefits appeal services" means services that a veteran might
reasonably require in order to appeal a denial of federal or state veterans benefits,
including but not limited to denials of disability, limited income, home loan, insurance,
education and training, burial and memorial, and dependent and survivor benefits.
new text end

new text begin (d) "Veterans benefits services" means services that a veteran or a family member of
a veteran might reasonably use in order to obtain federal, state, or county veterans benefits.
new text end

new text begin (e) "Written disclosure statement" means the written disclosure statement developed
by the commissioner of veterans affairs pursuant to section 196.05, subdivision 1.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Advertising disclosure requirements. new text end

new text begin A person advertising veterans
benefits appeal services must conspicuously disclose in the advertisement, in similar type
size or voice-over, that veterans benefits appeal services are also offered at no cost by
county veterans service officers under sections 197.603 and 197.604.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Veterans benefits services disclosure requirements. new text end

new text begin A person who
provides veterans benefits services in exchange for compensation shall provide a written
disclosure statement to each client or prospective client. Before a person enters into such
an agreement to provide veterans benefits services or accepts money or any other thing of
value for the provision of veterans benefits services, the person must obtain the signature
of the client on a written disclosure statement containing an attestation by the client that
the client has read and understands the written disclosure statement.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Violations; penalties. new text end

new text begin A person who fails to comply with this section
is subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $1,000 for each violation. Civil penalties
shall be assessed by the district court in an action initiated by the attorney general. For
the purposes of computing the amount of each civil penalty, each day of a continuing
violation constitutes a separate violation. Additionally, the attorney general may accept
a civil penalty as determined by the attorney general in settlement of an investigation
of a violation of this section regardless of whether an action has been filed under this
section. Any civil penalty recovered shall be deposited in the Support Our Troops account
established under section 190.19.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 5. new text end

new text begin Nonapplicability. new text end

new text begin This section does not apply to the owner or personnel
of any medium in which an advertisement appears or through which an advertisement is
disseminated.
new text end