MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING
THE DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS
VA-ONCE (VA ONline
Certification of Enrollment)
Electronic Transfer of Enrollment
Educational Institutions to the Department of Veterans Affairs
This is an agreement between the Department of Veterans Affairs, hereinafter referred
to as VA, and
, hereinafter referred to as the institution. The purpose of this agreement
is to establish an alternative procedure for the institution to use to make certifications
to VA of enrollments and changes in enrollments of students of the institution who seek to
receive benefits under educational assistance programs administered by VA.
Under current procedures, a majority of institutions use the VACERT program to
electronically transmit enrollment information to VA. The other institutions prepare such
certifications in written form, the institution's certifying official signs them, and
presents them to VA in that form. The alternative procedure authorized under this
agreement permits the institution to use an Internet program known as
VA-ONCE, to submit the
certifications solely by electronic means.
II. AGREEMENTS BY VA
VA agrees to accept, instead of certifications made on printed forms prescribed by VA
for that purpose or certifications generated by the VACERT program, certifications created
by the institution using the VA-ONCE program in the form of electronic certification
documents or written computer-generated documents signed by the institution's certifying
official(s). VA also agrees to maintain the history file of enrollment activity on its
III. OBLIGATIONS AND AGREEMENTS OF INSTITUTION
The institution, by executing this agreement and in consideration of the agreement of
VA to accept the alternative VA-ONCE generated written or electronic documents submitted by
the institution, agrees to comply with all applicable laws, regulations, and VA
requirements pertaining to certifications of enrollments and notices of change in student
status, even though the provisions of those laws, regulations, or requirements do not
appear on the certifications created by the VA-ONCE program.
The institution acknowledges that by using the VA-ONCE program it is subject to all the
duties and liabilities pertaining to educational institutions found in 38 U.S.C. sections
3684 and 3685; 38 CFR sections 21.4203, 21.4209, 21.7156, 21.7307, 21.7656, 21.7807, and
21.5200; all certifications applicable to the institution certifying on comparably
prescribed VA forms otherwise in use at the time of the certifications; and any other
provisions of law or regulations that apply.
The institution certifies that it has appropriate resources, including hardware,
software, and staff, to effectively use the VA-ONCE program instead of traditional
certification procedures. The institution must provide an appropriate web browser
which can be obtained free from several vendors.
The institution agrees to take reasonable precautions to safeguard against unauthorized
access to VA-ONCE, and to prevent improper use or disclosure of passwords. The institution
also agrees to notify VA immediately upon learning of any unauthorized access,
unauthorized use, or disclosure of a password. The institution further agrees to notify VA
immediately if any authorized certifying official leaves that position so that VA can
suspend the certifying official's user ID and password.
To the maximum extent permitted by the law applicable to the institution,
the institution hereby agrees to hold harmless the Department of Veterans Affairs from
any claim for damages based on use of the VA-ONCE program.
Upon receipt of the signed agreement from the institution, and executed by VA, VA will
furnish each designated certifying official with his or her own user ID and password
that will be necessary to access the Internet-based program.
If the institution electronically sends files to the regional processing office, VA
will continually monitor the quality and timeliness of the information. VA will notify the
institution of problems detected during the receipt and processing of these files.
The institution agrees to inform VA of any problems found with the VA-ONCE
could jeopardize the accuracy, integrity or confidentiality of the information contained
in files electronically sent to the regional processing office.
The institution may withdraw from this Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at any time by
notifying VA in writing 60 days beforehand. After withdrawing from this MOU, the
institution is required to timely submit certifications using VA Form 22-1999, Enrollment
VA will conduct periodic reviews of this Memorandum of Understanding as deemed
necessary. Changes of this Memorandum of Understanding shall be in writing and approved by
the signatories or their successors.
Data for VA-ONCE is stored behind the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) firewall and
thus falls under its approved data protection storage procedures. When the institution
sends data over the Internet it will be encrypted using Secure Sockets Layer (SSL)
technology, an accepted industry standard. Access to the data will be protected and
controlled by unique user names and passwords. Passwords will follow the VBA standard of
this day of , .
Executed by the Department of Veterans Affairs
this ________ day of