B-134785, MAR. 6, 1958

B-134785: Mar 6, 1958

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HARRIS: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED DECEMBER 11. IT APPEARS THAT WHILE YOU WERE SERVING AS AN ENLISTED MEMBER OF THE ARMY OF THE UNITED STATES YOU APPLIED FOR FAMILY ALLOWANCES IN BEHALF OF YOUR MOTHER ON FEBRUARY 8. THE APPLICATION WAS REJECTED ON THE BASIS THAT DEPENDENCY WAS NOT ESTABLISHED. THIS APPLICATION WAS APPROVED. PAYMENT OF THE ALLOWANCE IN THE AMOUNT OF $37 A MONTH WAS AUTHORIZED AND PAID TO YOUR MOTHER EFFECTIVE OCTOBER 1. PAYMENTS WERE MADE MONTHLY THROUGH MAY 1946. AN EXAMINATION OF YOUR PAY ACCOUNT FOR THE PERIOD OF PAYMENTS OF THE ALLOWANCES SHOWS THAT NO DEDUCTIONS WERE MADE FROM YOUR PAY AS YOUR CONTRIBUTION TO THE ALLOWANCE. ALTHOUGH CONTRIBUTIONS BY MEANS OF A PAYROLL DEDUCTION WERE REQUIRED BY SECTION 106 OF THE SERVICEMEN'S DEPENDENTS ALLOWANCE ACT OF 1942.

B-134785, MAR. 6, 1958

TO MR. STANLEY Z. HARRIS:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED DECEMBER 11, 1957, CONCERNING YOUR INDEBTEDNESS TO THE UNITED STATES IN THE AMOUNT OF $176, ARISING OUT OF THE NONDEDUCTION FROM YOUR PAY, AS AN ENLISTED MAN, ARMY OF THE UNITED STATES, OF YOUR CONTRIBUTION TOWARD FAMILY ALLOWANCE PAID TO YOUR MOTHER, MRS. ELIZABETH HARRIS, FOR THE PERIOD OCTOBER 1, 1945, THROUGH MAY 31, 1946, AT $22 A MONTH.

IT APPEARS THAT WHILE YOU WERE SERVING AS AN ENLISTED MEMBER OF THE ARMY OF THE UNITED STATES YOU APPLIED FOR FAMILY ALLOWANCES IN BEHALF OF YOUR MOTHER ON FEBRUARY 8, 1944, BUT THE APPLICATION WAS REJECTED ON THE BASIS THAT DEPENDENCY WAS NOT ESTABLISHED. YOU AGAIN APPLIED FOR FAMILY ALLOWANCES IN BEHALF OF YOUR MOTHER ON OCTOBER 19, 1945. THIS APPLICATION WAS APPROVED, AND PAYMENT OF THE ALLOWANCE IN THE AMOUNT OF $37 A MONTH WAS AUTHORIZED AND PAID TO YOUR MOTHER EFFECTIVE OCTOBER 1, 1945. PAYMENTS WERE MADE MONTHLY THROUGH MAY 1946, WHEN DISCONTINUED UPON YOUR SEPARATION FROM THE SERVICE. AN EXAMINATION OF YOUR PAY ACCOUNT FOR THE PERIOD OF PAYMENTS OF THE ALLOWANCES SHOWS THAT NO DEDUCTIONS WERE MADE FROM YOUR PAY AS YOUR CONTRIBUTION TO THE ALLOWANCE, ALTHOUGH CONTRIBUTIONS BY MEANS OF A PAYROLL DEDUCTION WERE REQUIRED BY SECTION 106 OF THE SERVICEMEN'S DEPENDENTS ALLOWANCE ACT OF 1942, AS AMENDED, 37 U.S.C. (1946 EDITION) 206.

YOU DO NOT APPEAR TO QUESTION THE FACT THAT YOU APPLIED FOR THE ALLOWANCE OR THAT YOUR MOTHER RECEIVED THE ALLOWANCE. YOU CONTEND THAT AT THE TIME THE ALLOWANCE WAS INITIATED YOU WERE OVERSEAS AND THAT YOUR PAY WAS "SUBSTANTIALLY LESS AFTER THE ALLOTMENT STARTED," AND YOU QUESTION THE ACCURACY OF THE STATEMENT THAT NO DEDUCTION WAS MADE FROM YOUR PAY AS YOUR STATUTORY CONTRIBUTION TOWARD THE FAMILY ALLOWANCE.

IN THE EXAMINATION OF YOUR PAY ACCOUNT AND YOUR ALLOTMENT RECORDS IT HAS BEEN NOTED THAT IN FEBRUARY 1945 YOU INITIATED A CLASS E (VOLUNTARY) ALLOTMENT IN THE AMOUNT OF $30 A MONTH, WHICH WAS DISCONTINUED APRIL 30, 1946. THIS ALLOTMENT WAS PAID AND PROPER DEDUCTIONS WERE MADE FROM YOUR PAY. IT IS POSSIBLE THAT THESE CLASS E ALLOTMENT DEDUCTIONS HAVE BEEN CONFUSED BY YOU WITH THE CLASS F (FAMILY ALLOWANCE) DEDUCTIONS, WHICH SHOULD HAVE BEEN MADE IN ADDITION TO THE CLASS E DEDUCTIONS FOR THE PERIOD BEGINNING OCTOBER 1, 1945, UNTIL YOUR DISCHARGE.

YOU FURTHER CONTEND THAT IT IS UNFAIR AND UNJUST FOR THE GOVERNMENT TO ATTEMPT COLLECTION SO MANY YEARS AFTER THE EVENT, AND THAT THE DEBT AROSE THROUGH NO FAULT OF YOUR OWN.

WHILE WE CAN APPRECIATE YOUR POSITION, IT MUST BE POINTED OUT THAT YOU APPLIED FOR THE ALLOWANCE, IT WAS AUTHORIZED AND PAID TO YOUR DEPENDENT MOTHER, BUT THAT YOUR STATUTORY CONTRIBUTION TO THE ALLOWANCE WAS NOT DEDUCTED FROM YOUR PAY, AND IRRESPECTIVE OF THE PLACING OF FAULT, YOU ARE INDEBTED TO THE GOVERNMENT FOR THE $22 MONTHLY CONTRIBUTION FOR 8 MONTHS. IN REEXAMINING THE RECORD, IT HAS BEEN NOTED THAT DEMAND WAS MADE UPON YOU FOR PAYMENT OF THE INDEBTEDNESS AS EARLY AS AUGUST 12, 1948, BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY. THE MATTER WAS THEREAFTER REFERRED TO OUR OFFICE FOR APPROPRIATE ACTION. IT APPEARS THAT EACH TIME DEMAND IS MADE UPON YOU, YOU PROTEST THAT DEDUCTIONS WERE MADE; EACH TIME A NEW EXAMINATION OF THE RECORD IS MADE IN ORDER TO GIVE YOU EVERY BENEFIT OF A POSSIBLE ERROR, HOWEVER, THE DEBT IS VERIFIED.

YOUR PROTEST THAT IT IS UNFAIR AND UNJUST TO REQUIRE YOU TO PAY THE INDEBTEDNESS IS WITHOUT MERIT. AS INDICATED ABOVE, YOU REQUESTED THE ALLOWANCE AND THE GOVERNMENT PAID YOUR MOTHER $37 A MONTH FOR 8 MONTHS, OF WHICH ONLY $22 A MONTH WAS REQUIRED TO BE CONTRIBUTED BY DEDUCTION FROM YOUR PAY, HENCE, YOU ARE INDEBTED IN THE AMOUNT OF $176.

ACCORDINGLY, UPON REVIEW, THE INDEBTEDNESS HAS BEEN VERIFIED, AND ARRANGEMENTS SHOULD BE MADE TO PAY IT WITHOUT FURTHER DELAY.