B-159912, SEP. 6, 1966

B-159912: Sep 6, 1966

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REEVES: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 4. THE RIGHT TO MUSTERING-OUT PAY OF MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES WHO WERE DISCHARGED OR RELEASED FROM ACTIVE DUTY UNDER HONORABLE CONDITIONS ON OR AFTER DECEMBER 7. WAS GOVERNED BY THE MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENT ACT OF 1944. THIS ACT CONTAINED A TIME LIMITATION WITHIN WHICH APPLICATIONS FOR SUCH PAYMENTS WERE REQUIRED TO BE MADE AS FOLLOWS: "ANY MEMBER OF THE ARMED FORCES ENTITLED TO MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENT WHO SHALL HAVE BEEN DISCHARGED OR RELIEVED FROM ACTIVE SERVICE UNDER HONORABLE CONDITIONS BEFORE FEBRUARY 3. IF APPLICATION THEREFOR IS MADE NOT LATER THAN FEBRUARY 3. WHILE YOU STATE THAT YOUR HUSBAND WAS ADVISED BY THE NAVY AT THE TIME OF HIS DISCHARGE THAT MUSTERING-OUT PAY WOULD BE MAILED TO HIM.

B-159912, SEP. 6, 1966

TO MRS. ROBERT L. REEVES:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 4, 1966, REQUESTING FURTHER CONSIDERATION OF YOUR CLAIM FOR MUSTERING-OUT PAY BELIEVED TO BE DUE YOUR LATE HUSBAND, ROBERT LYNN REEVES, USNR, 556 19 74, INCIDENT TO HIS DISCHARGE ON MARCH 18, 1943.

THE RIGHT TO MUSTERING-OUT PAY OF MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES WHO WERE DISCHARGED OR RELEASED FROM ACTIVE DUTY UNDER HONORABLE CONDITIONS ON OR AFTER DECEMBER 7, 1941, AND PRIOR TO FEBRUARY 3, 1944, WAS GOVERNED BY THE MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENT ACT OF 1944, CH. 9, 58 STAT. 8, AS AMENDED BY THE ACT OF MAY 19, 1948, CH. 312, 62 STAT. 241, 38 U.S.C. 691C (1946 ED., SUPP. II). THIS ACT CONTAINED A TIME LIMITATION WITHIN WHICH APPLICATIONS FOR SUCH PAYMENTS WERE REQUIRED TO BE MADE AS FOLLOWS:

"ANY MEMBER OF THE ARMED FORCES ENTITLED TO MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENT WHO SHALL HAVE BEEN DISCHARGED OR RELIEVED FROM ACTIVE SERVICE UNDER HONORABLE CONDITIONS BEFORE FEBRUARY 3, 1944 SHALL, IF APPLICATION THEREFOR IS MADE NOT LATER THAN FEBRUARY 3, 1950, BE PAID SUCH MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENT BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY OR THE NAVY DEPARTMENT, AS THE CASE MAY BE, BEGINNING WITHIN ONE MONTH AFTER APPLICATION HAS BEEN RECEIVED AND APPROVED BY SUCH DEPARTMENT: * * *.'

WHILE YOU STATE THAT YOUR HUSBAND WAS ADVISED BY THE NAVY AT THE TIME OF HIS DISCHARGE THAT MUSTERING-OUT PAY WOULD BE MAILED TO HIM, YOUR ATTENTION IS INVITED TO THE FACT THAT WHEN HE WAS DISCHARGED FROM THE NAVY IN 1943 THERE WAS NO LAW AUTHORIZING PAYMENT OF MUSTERING-OUT PAY TO DISCHARGE MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES WHO SERVED ON ACTIVE DUTY DURING WORLD WAR II. THE MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENT ACT WAS NOT ENACTED UNTIL FEBRUARY 3, 1944, NEARLY ONE YEAR AFTER HIS DISCHARGE. THAT LAW WAS NOT SELF- EXECUTING AND A SERVICEMAN WHO WAS DISCHARGED BEFORE THE LATTER DATE COULD RECEIVE NO PAYMENT UNLESS HE MADE SPECIFIC CLAIM THEREFOR NOT LATER THAN FEBRUARY 3, 1950. SINCE IT APPEARS THAT YOUR HUSBAND FILED NO CLAIM, THE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY WAS NOT PUT ON NOTICE THAT AN EXAMINATION OF HIS RECORD WOULD SHOW HIS ELIGIBILITY TO RECEIVE SUCH PAY AND PAYMENT WAS NOT AUTHORIZED IN ANY EVENT IN THE ABSENCE OF SUCH CLAIM.

ACCORDINGLY, SINCE OUR OFFICE IS WITHOUT AUTHORITY TO MAKE ANY EXCEPTIONS TO THE SPECIFIC PROVISIONS OF THE 1944 ACT, AS AMENDED, OR GRANT ANY EXTENSION OF TIME WITHIN WHICH CLAIMS MAY BE FILED, THERE IS NO BASIS FOR THE PAYMENT OF YOUR CLAIM.