B-161420, JUN. 13, 1967

B-161420: Jun 13, 1967

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LOPE BELARMINO: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 3. THE LETTER AND ENCLOSURES WERE TRANSMITTED BY THE CLAIMS DIVISION. CLAIMING ADDITIONAL MUSTERING-OUT PAY WAS RECEIVED IN THIS OFFICE ON NOVEMBER 15. MUSTERING-OUT PAY IN THE AMOUNT OF $300 WAS AUTHORIZED FOR ACTIVE SERVICE OF 90 DAYS OR MORE OUTSIDE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES. WHILE YOUR LETTER IS NOT CLEARLY UNDERSTOOD. APPARENTLY YOU BELIEVE AN ADDITIONAL AMOUNT IS DUE BECAUSE YOU WERE NOT PAID THE NUMBER OF DOLLARS AUTHORIZED FOR YOUR SERVICE. YOU WERE PAID AN EQUAL NUMBER OF PESOS. YOUR CLAIM WAS RETURNED TO YOU BY OUR CLAIMS DIVISION ON DECEMBER 1. SINCE IT WAS RECEIVED IN OUR OFFICE MORE THAN 10 YEARS AFTER IT FIRST ACCRUED.

B-161420, JUN. 13, 1967

TO MR. LOPE BELARMINO:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF MARCH 3, 1967, ADDRESSED TO THE CHIEF, UNITED STATES ARMY, INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA, WITH WHICH YOU ENCLOSED A FURTHER LETTER DATED JANUARY 30, 1967, CLAIMING ADDITIONAL MUSTERING-OUT PAY BELIEVED DUE INCIDENT TO YOUR SERVICE AS A MEMBER OF THE PHILIPPINE SCOUTS FROM APRIL 1, 1946, TO FEBRUARY 26, 1949. THE LETTER AND ENCLOSURES WERE TRANSMITTED BY THE CLAIMS DIVISION, FINANCE CENTER, UNITED STATES ARMY, INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA, FOR CONSIDERATION BY OUR OFFICE.

YOUR LETTER DATED AUGUST 24, 1965, CLAIMING ADDITIONAL MUSTERING-OUT PAY WAS RECEIVED IN THIS OFFICE ON NOVEMBER 15, 1965. YOU STATED THAT UNDER SECTION 14 OF PUBLIC LAW 190, 79TH CONGRESS (59 STAT. 543), MUSTERING-OUT PAY IN THE AMOUNT OF $300 WAS AUTHORIZED FOR ACTIVE SERVICE OF 90 DAYS OR MORE OUTSIDE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES. WHILE YOUR LETTER IS NOT CLEARLY UNDERSTOOD, APPARENTLY YOU BELIEVE AN ADDITIONAL AMOUNT IS DUE BECAUSE YOU WERE NOT PAID THE NUMBER OF DOLLARS AUTHORIZED FOR YOUR SERVICE, BUT INSTEAD, YOU WERE PAID AN EQUAL NUMBER OF PESOS.

YOUR CLAIM WAS RETURNED TO YOU BY OUR CLAIMS DIVISION ON DECEMBER 1, 1965, TOGETHER WITH A COPY OF THE ACT OF OCTOBER 9, 1940, 54 STAT. 1061, 31 U.S.C. 71A, SINCE IT WAS RECEIVED IN OUR OFFICE MORE THAN 10 YEARS AFTER IT FIRST ACCRUED.

IN RESPONSE TO YOUR LETTER DATED MARCH 22, 1966, STATING YOU PRESENTED YOUR CLAIM ON JANUARY 14, 1954, TO THE FINANCE CENTER, U.S. ARMY, INDIANAPOLIS 49, INDIANA, OUR CLAIMS DIVISION ADVISED YOU FURTHER BY LETTER DATED APRIL 13, 1966, THAT EVEN THOUGH YOU MAY HAVE FILED A CLAIM WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY IN 1954, THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY AND THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE ARE SEPARATE AND DISTINCT OFFICES AND SUCH FILING WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY WAS NOT A SUFFICIENT COMPLIANCE WITH THE 1940 ACT, SINCE THE ACT REQUIRES THAT CLAIMS BE TIMELY FILED IN THIS OFFICE.

GENERALLY, OTHERWISE PROPER CLAIMS FOR MUSTERING-OUT PAY UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENT ACT OF 1944, AS AMENDED, 38 U.S.C. 691-691G (1946 ED.) WERE PAID BY THE DEPARTMENT CONCERNED. THE ACT DID NOT PRESCRIBE A TIME LIMIT FOR THE FILING OF CLAIMS BY THOSE MEMBERS WHO WERE DISCHARGED ON OR AFTER THE DATE OF ENACTMENT OF THAT ACT, AS IN YOUR CASE. NOR WAS THERE ANYTHING IN THAT ACT WHICH PRECLUDED OUR OFFICE FROM SETTLING SUCH CLAIMS, BASED ON THE RECOMMENDATION OF THE DEPARTMENT CONCERNED. HENCE, CLAIMS FOR MUSTERING-OUT PAY BY FORMER MEMBERS WHO WERE DISCHARGED AFTER ENACTMENT OF THE 1944 ACT ARE SUBJECT TO THE 10-YEAR BARRING ACT (31 U.S.C. 71A) AND WHEN BARRED BY THAT ACT, MAY NOT BE CONSIDERED BY THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE OR BY ANY OTHER AGENCY OF THE GOVERNMENT. FURTHERMORE, AS PREVIOUSLY STATED, THE FILING OF A CLAIM WITH SOME OTHER AGENCY OF THE GOVERNMENT WITHIN THE LIMITATION PERIOD DOES NOT SATISFY THE REQUIREMENTS OF THAT ACT. SEE 32 COMP. GEN. 267, COPY ENCLOSED.

IT MAY BE STATED THAT EVEN IF YOUR CLAIM FOR ADDITIONAL MUSTERING OUT PAY WERE NOT BARRED, YOU APPARENTLY WOULD NOT BE ENTITLED TO ANY ADDITIONAL AMOUNT. THE MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENT ACT OF 1944, 58 STAT. 8, AS AMENDED, WHICH WAS MADE APPLICABLE TO PHILIPPINE SCOUTS UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF TITLE II OF THE ACT OF MAY 27, 1946, 60 STAT. 223-224, AUTHORIZED MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENTS IN THE AMOUNT OF $100 TO MEMBERS PERFORMING ACTIVE SERVICE FOR LESS THAN 60 DAYS; $200 FOR MEMBERS SERVING MORE THAN 60 DAYS WITHIN THE UNITED STATES, AND $300 FOR PERSONS SERVING MORE THAN 60 DAYS, WHO SERVED OUTSIDE THE CONTINENTAL LIMITS OF THE UNITED STATES, OR IN ALASKA.

TITLE II OF THE ACT OF MAY 27, 1946, REFERRED TO ABOVE, PROVIDES IN PERTINENT PART (1) THAT FOR THE PURPOSE OF COMPUTING MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENTS FOR SERVICE IN THE PHILIPPINE SCOUTS UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 14 OF THE ACT OF OCTOBER 6, 1945, 59 STAT. 538, 543, SERVICE WHOLLY PERFORMED IN THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS SHOULD BE COMPENSATED FOR ON THE SAME BASIS AS SERVICE WHOLLY PERFORMED WITHIN THE UNITED STATES AND (2) THAT MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENTS MADE ON ACCOUNT OF SERVICE IN THE PHILIPPINE SCOUTS SHALL BE PAID AT THE RATE OF ONE PHILIPPINE PESO FOR EACH DOLLAR AUTHORIZED BY THE 1944 ACT. UNDER THE ABOVE PROVISIONS, A PHILIPPINE SCOUT WHO SERVED MORE THAN 60 DAYS AND WHO SERVED OUTSIDE THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS WAS ENTITLED TO A MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENT OF $150, THE EQUIVALENT OF 300 PESOS. IF HIS SERVICE WAS WHOLLY PERFORMED WITHIN THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS HE WAS ENTITLED TO A MUSTERING-OUT PAYMENT OF $100, THE EQUIVALENT OF 200 PESOS. ON THE BASIS OF YOUR STATEMENTS AS TO YOUR SERVICE AND THE AMOUNT OF MUSTERING-OUT PAY YOU RECEIVED, IT WOULD APPEAR THAT NO ADDITIONAL AMOUNT WOULD HAVE BEEN AUTHORIZED INCIDENT TO YOUR SERVICE.

HOWEVER THAT MAY BE, WE ARE PRECLUDED BY THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF OCTOBER 9, 1940, FROM TAKING ANY ACTION ON YOUR CLAIM.