Rule 9:
Loss of Sponsorship by Non-Attorney Practitioner

(a) Initial Action. After receiving information that a non-attorney practitioner is no longer:

(1) Under the direct supervision of an attorney admitted to the Court's bar; or

(2) employed by an organization chartered by Congress and recognized by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs for claims representation,

the Clerk will issue an order directing the practitioner to show cause why the Court should not impose on him or her an administrative suspension from practice until the deficiency is remedied. The Clerk will mail that order (along with a copy of these rules) to the practitioner concerned.

(b) Suspension. If the non-attorney practitioner fails to respond to the order or verifies the loss of sponsorship, or if the Clerk determines, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the sponsorship has been terminated, the Clerk will issue an order imposing on him or her an immediate administrative suspension from practice. All administrative suspensions under this subsection are nondisciplinary.

(c) Recertification. A non-attorney practitioner who is under a new sponsorship arrangement or who has been suspended under subsection (b) above may apply for recertification under Rule 46 of the Court's Rules of Practice and Procedure by filing a new sponsorship certificate, identical to that required for admission. Such application may be filed at any time after the non-attorney practitioner concerned has been suspended.

(d) Appeal. A non-attorney practitioner who has been suspended under subsection (b) above may appeal that suspension to the Court by filing a notice of appeal with the Clerk not later than 30 days after such suspension is effected. The Clerk will then refer the matter to a Panel for decision.