A-10096, MAY 19, 1939, 18 COMP. GEN. 873

A-10096: May 19, 1939

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PROVIDING THAT ON COURT OF CLAIMS "JUDGMENTS IN FAVOR OF CLAIMANTS WHICH HAVE BEEN APPEALED BY THE UNITED STATES AND AFFIRMED BY THE SUPREME COURT. THE PLAINTIFF INDIANS WERE ALLOWED $5. THE CLAIM WAS ALLOWED IN THE AMOUNT OF $179. AS FOLLOWS: THAT HEREAFTER IT SHALL BE THE DUTY OF THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY TO CERTIFY TO CONGRESS FOR APPROPRIATION ONLY SUCH JUDGMENTS OF THE COURT OF CLAIMS AS ARE NOT TO BE APPEALED. OR SUCH APPEALED CASES AS SHALL HAVE BEEN DECIDED BY THE SUPREME COURT TO BE DUE AND PAYABLE. ON JUDGMENTS IN FAVOR OF CLAIMANTS WHICH HAVE BEEN APPEALED BY THE UNITED STATES AND AFFIRMED BY THE SUPREME COURT. THAT IN NO CASE SHALL INTEREST BE ALLOWED AFTER THE TERM OF THE SUPREME COURT AT WHICH SAID JUDGMENT WAS AFFIRMED.

A-10096, MAY 19, 1939, 18 COMP. GEN. 873

INTEREST - JUDGMENTS - APPEALED CASES - GOVERNMENT LIABILITY FOR DOUBLE INTEREST THE ACT OF SEPTEMBER 30, 1890, 26 STAT. 537, PROVIDING THAT ON COURT OF CLAIMS "JUDGMENTS IN FAVOR OF CLAIMANTS WHICH HAVE BEEN APPEALED BY THE UNITED STATES AND AFFIRMED BY THE SUPREME COURT, INTEREST, AT THE RATE OF FOUR PERCENTUM PER ANNUM, SHALL BE ALLOWED AND PAID FROM THE DATE OF FILING THE TRANSCRIPT OF JUDGMENT IN THE TREASURY DEPARTMENT UP TO AND INCLUDING THE DATE OF THE MANDATE OF AFFIRMANCE BY THE SUPREME COURT," REQUIRES ONLY THAT INTEREST BE PAID ON THAT PART OF A JUDGMENT WHICH DID NOT ITSELF CARRY INTEREST.

ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL ELLIOTT TO THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY, MAY 19, 1939:

UNDER AUTHORITY OF THE ACT OF MAY 26, 1920, 41 STAT. 623, COURT OF CLAIMS HEARD THE CASE OF THE KLAMATH AND MOADOC TRIBES AND YAHOOSKIN BAND OF SNAKE INDIANS V. THE UNITED STATES, 85 CT.CLS. 451, AND ON JUNE 22, 1937, ORDERED JUDGMENT IN FAVOR OF THE PLAINTIFFS TO BE ENTERED NUNC PRO TUNC AS OF JUNE 7, 1937, FOR THE SUM OF $5,313,347.32, WITH INTEREST AT 5 PERCENT PER ANNUM ON $2,871,250 FROM JUNE 7, 1937, TO DATE OF PAYMENT.

THE GOVERNMENT CARRIED THE CASE TO THE SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES (304 U.S. 119), THE TRANSCRIPT OF THE JUDGMENT BEING FILED IN THE TREASURY DEPARTMENT ON JUNE 28, 1937, AND ON MAY 3, 1938, THE SUPREME COURT ISSUED ITS MANDATE OF AFFIRMANCE OF THE COURT OF CLAIMS JUDGMENT.

BY SETTLEMENT NO. 0505061, JULY 8, 1938, THE PLAINTIFF INDIANS WERE ALLOWED $5,418,709.48, REPRESENTING THE PRINCIPAL AMOUNT OF THE JUDGMENT, $5,313,347.32, PLUS INTEREST AT 5 PERCENT PER ANNUM ON $2,871,250 FROM JUNE 7, 1937, THROUGH JULY 7, 1938 ($155,362.16), LESS $50,000 SUBSEQUENTLY APPLIED AS PARTIAL PAYMENT OF ATTORNEYS' FEES, PURSUANT TO COURT ORDER, BY SETTLEMENT NO. 0509911, AUGUST 15, 1938.

THEREAFTER THE ATTORNEYS FOR THE PLAINTIFF INDIANS FILED CLAIM, PURSUANT TO THE ACT OF SEPTEMBER 30, 1890, 26 STAT. 537, FOR INTEREST AT THE RATE OF 4 PERCENT PER ANNUM ON THE PRINCIPAL AMOUNT OF THE JUDGMENT, $5,313,347.32, FROM THE DATE OF FILING THE TRANSCRIPT OF JUDGMENT IN THE TREASURY DEPARTMENT (JUNE 28, 1937) TO THE DATE OF THE MANDATE OF AFFIRMANCE BY THE SUPREME COURT (MAY 3, 1938). THE CLAIM WAS ALLOWED IN THE AMOUNT OF $179,925.95 BY SETTLEMENT NO. 0528259, FEBRUARY 6, 1939.

THE ACT OF SEPTEMBER 30, 1890, SUPRA, PROVIDES, IN PART, AS FOLLOWS:

THAT HEREAFTER IT SHALL BE THE DUTY OF THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY TO CERTIFY TO CONGRESS FOR APPROPRIATION ONLY SUCH JUDGMENTS OF THE COURT OF CLAIMS AS ARE NOT TO BE APPEALED, OR SUCH APPEALED CASES AS SHALL HAVE BEEN DECIDED BY THE SUPREME COURT TO BE DUE AND PAYABLE. AND ON JUDGMENTS IN FAVOR OF CLAIMANTS WHICH HAVE BEEN APPEALED BY THE UNITED STATES AND AFFIRMED BY THE SUPREME COURT, INTEREST, AT THE RATE OF FOUR PERCENT PER ANNUM, SHALL BE ALLOWED AND PAID FROM THE DATE OF FILING THE TRANSCRIPT OF JUDGMENT IN THE TREASURY DEPARTMENT UP TO AND INCLUDING THE DATE OF THE MANDATE OF AFFIRMANCE BY THE SUPREME COURT: PROVIDED, THAT IN NO CASE SHALL INTEREST BE ALLOWED AFTER THE TERM OF THE SUPREME COURT AT WHICH SAID JUDGMENT WAS AFFIRMED.

THE SUPREME COURT HAD OCCASION TO CONSIDER THIS STATUTE IN THE CASE OF CHEROKEE NATION V. UNITED STATES, 270 U.S. 476, WHICH INVOLVED A SITUATION SIMILAR TO THAT HERE UNDER CONSIDERATION, AND THE COURT STATED WITH RESPECT TO THE APPLICATION OF SAID STATUTE TO JUDGMENTS APPEALED BY THE UNITED STATES:

IT IS QUITE CLEAR THAT THE STATUTE APPLIES WHERE JUDGMENTS AGAINST THE UNITED STATES BEAR NO INTEREST, AND CERTAINLY NOT TO ONE IN WHICH THE JUDGMENT ITSELF PROVIDES FOR A CERTAIN RATE OF INTEREST AFTER ITS ENTRY.

IT IS QUITE CLEAR THAT THE MISTAKE MADE BY THE TREASURY, AND BY CONGRESS, TOO, IN ATTEMPTING TO CARRY OUT THE JUDGMENT OF THIS COURT, WAS IN ASSUMING, FIRST, THAT 4 PERCENT SHOULD BE ALLOWED ON THE TOTAL OF ALL ITEMS AND INTEREST BETWEEN THE DATE OF FILING THE TRANSCRIPT OF THE JUDGMENT IN THE TREASURY DEPARTMENT, AND THE DATE OF THE MANDATE OF AFFIRMANCE BY THE SUPREME COURT, AS ALREADY POINTED OUT. * * *

IN THE PRESENT CASE THE JUDGMENT ITSELF PROVIDED FOR THE PAYMENT OF INTEREST AT THE RATE OF 5 PERCENT PER ANNUM ON THE SUM OF $2,871,250, UNTIL PAID, AND THIS SUM WAS NOT PAID UNTIL AFTER THE DATE OF THE MANDATE OF AFFIRMANCE BY THE SUPREME COURT. THEREFORE, IN VIEW OF THE DECISION OF THE SUPREME COURT IN THE CHEROKEE NATION CASE, SUPRA, INTEREST UNDER THE 1890 STATUTE WAS ONLY REQUIRED TO BE PAID ON THAT PART OF THE JUDGMENT WHICH DID NOT ITSELF CARRY INTEREST, $2,442,097.32, WHICH, AT THE RATE OF FOUR PERCENT PER ANNUM FOR THE PERIOD JUNE 28, 1937, TO MAY 3, 1938, AMOUNTS OF $82,696.77. THERE WAS THUS AN OVERPAYMENT OF $97,229.18 UNDER SETTLEMENT NO. 0528259, SUPRA.

PAYMENT OF THE SUM OF $179,925.95, AS INTEREST UNDER THE 1890 STATUTE, WAS MADE FROM THE APPROPRIATION "14-2907, JUDGMENTS, COURT OF CLAIMS, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, INDIANS" AND CREDITED TO THE ACCOUNT "147127, DEPOSIT TO KLAMATH AND MOADOC TRIBES AND YAHOOSKIN BAND OF SNAKE INDIANS, JUDGMENT FUND.' WHILE SECTION 203 (A) OF THE SECOND DEFICIENCY APPROPRIATION ACT, FISCAL YEAR 1938, 52 STAT. 1114, 1156, MADE AN APPROPRIATION FOR PAYMENT OF THE PRINCIPAL AMOUNT OF THE JUDGMENT IN THIS CASE, AND SUCH ADDITIONAL AMOUNT AS NECESSARY "TO PAY INTEREST AS AND WHERE SPECIFIED IN SUCH JUDGMENTS, OR AS REQUIRED UNDER MANDATE OF THE SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES," IT IS CLEAR, FROM THE PRINCIPLE STATED IN THE CHEROKEE NATION CASE, THAT PAYMENT OF INTEREST UNDER THE 1890 STATUTE IS NOT "REQUIRED UNDER MANDATE OF THE SUPREME COURT" WITH RESPECT TO THAT PART OF THE JUDGMENT WHICH CARRIED INTEREST.

ACCORDINGLY, SETTLEMENT NO. 0528259, SUPRA, IS HEREBY REVISED AND PROPER STEPS WILL BE TAKEN TO TRANSFER THE OVERPAYMENT OF $97,229.18 FROM THE ACCOUNT "147127, DEPOSIT TO KLAMATH AND MOADOC TRIBES AND YAHOOSKIN BAND OF SNAKE INDIANS, JUDGMENT FUND," TO THE APPROPRIATION "14-2907, JUDGMENTS, COURT OF CLAIMS, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, INDIANS.'