B-161891, AUG. 21, 1967

B-161891: Aug 21, 1967

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CLAIMS LEGAL FEES FOR SALE OF RESIDENCE AND WHO HAS BEEN ALLOWED LARGER AMOUNT FOR LEGAL SERVICES IN CONNECTION WITH PURCHASE OF HOME MAY NOT HAVE SUCH EXPENSES REGARDED AS REIMBURSABLE UNDER SEC. 4.2C. SUCH COSTS MAY BE ALLOWED ONLY IF IT IS DETERMINED THAT THE SAME TYPES OF COSTS WERE NOT INCURRED AND ALLOWED FOR PURCHASE OF RESIDENCE. IS CLAIMING $50 LEGAL FEES INCURRED INCIDENT TO THE SALE OF HIS RESIDENCE IN SPRINGFIELD. PROVIDES THAT TO THE EXTENT SUCH COSTS HAVE NOT BEEN INCLUDED IN THE BROKERS' OR SIMILAR SERVICES FOR WHICH REIMBURSEMENT IS CLAIMED UNDER OTHER CATEGORIES. BORDER'S CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF LEGAL EXPENSES FOR THE SALE OF HIS RESIDENCE AT SPRINGFIELD WAS DISALLOWED IN FAVOR OF ALLOWING A SIMILAR COST OF $85 IN CONNECTION WITH THE PURCHASE OF A NEW RESIDENCE AT TOLEDO.

B-161891, AUG. 21, 1967

EMPLOYEES - TRANSFERS - PUBLIC LAW 89-516 - HOME SALE/PURCHASE EXPENSES DECISION TO DISBURSING OFFICER, DEFENSE CONTRACT ADMINISTRATION RE CLAIM OF EMPLOYEE FOR LEGAL FEES FOR SALE OF HOUSE INCIDENT TO TRANSFER FROM SPRINGFIELD, VA., TO TOLEDO, OHIO. EMPLOYEE WHO INCIDENT TO TRANSFER FROM SPRINGFIELD, VA., TO TOLEDO, OHIO, CLAIMS LEGAL FEES FOR SALE OF RESIDENCE AND WHO HAS BEEN ALLOWED LARGER AMOUNT FOR LEGAL SERVICES IN CONNECTION WITH PURCHASE OF HOME MAY NOT HAVE SUCH EXPENSES REGARDED AS REIMBURSABLE UNDER SEC. 4.2C, BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-56, AND HE SHOULD BE REQUIRED TO REFUND LARGER AMOUNT. HOWEVER IF EMPLOYEE HAS NOT BEEN REIMBURSED FOR $25 SETTLEMENT FEE AND $25 FOR PREPARATION OF DEED IN CONNECTION WITH SALE, SUCH COSTS MAY BE ALLOWED ONLY IF IT IS DETERMINED THAT THE SAME TYPES OF COSTS WERE NOT INCURRED AND ALLOWED FOR PURCHASE OF RESIDENCE.

TO MAJOR J. E. NORTHCUT:

THIS REFERS TO YOUR UNDATED LETTER, WITH ENCLOSURES, REFERENCE DCRO FR, FORWARDED HERE BY LETTER OF JUNE 23, 1967, REFERENCE DSAH-CFF, FROM THE OFFICE OF THE COMPTROLLER OF THE DEFENSE SUPPLY AGENCY, REQUESTING OUR DECISION WHETHER THE ENCLOSED VOUCHER MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT. THE EMPLOYEE, MR. CLAYTON L. BORDER, IS CLAIMING $50 LEGAL FEES INCURRED INCIDENT TO THE SALE OF HIS RESIDENCE IN SPRINGFIELD, VIRGINIA, STEMMING FROM THE TRANSFER OF HIS OFFICIAL STATION FROM SPRINGFIELD, VIRGINIA, TO TOLEDO, OHIO. THIS CONSISTS OF $25 FOR PREPARATION OF A DEED AND $25 SETTLEMENT FEE.

SECTION 4.2C OF BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-56, REVISED OCTOBER 12, 1966, AUTHORIZES REIMBURSEMENT OF LEGAL AND RELATED COSTS. PROVIDES THAT TO THE EXTENT SUCH COSTS HAVE NOT BEEN INCLUDED IN THE BROKERS' OR SIMILAR SERVICES FOR WHICH REIMBURSEMENT IS CLAIMED UNDER OTHER CATEGORIES, CUSTOMARY COSTS OF SEARCHING TITLE, PREPARING CONVEYANCES AND OTHER INSTRUMENTS, AND PREPARING CONTRACTS, RELATED NOTARY FEES, RECORDING FEES, MAKING SURVEYS, PREPARING DRAWINGS OR PLATS WHEN REQUIRED FOR LEGAL OR FINANCING PURPOSES, AND SIMILAR EXPENSES, MAY BE REIMBURSED EITHER WITH RESPECT TO SALE OF THE RESIDENCE AT THE OLD OFFICIAL STATION OR PURCHASE OF A DWELLING AT THE NEW OFFICIAL STATION, BUT THE SAME TYPES OF COSTS SHALL NOT BE PAID AT BOTH LOCATIONS.

MR. BORDER'S CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF LEGAL EXPENSES FOR THE SALE OF HIS RESIDENCE AT SPRINGFIELD WAS DISALLOWED IN FAVOR OF ALLOWING A SIMILAR COST OF $85 IN CONNECTION WITH THE PURCHASE OF A NEW RESIDENCE AT TOLEDO, OHIO. THE LEGAL SERVICES FOR WHICH THE EMPLOYEE HAS BEEN REIMBURSED WERE OF AN ADVISORY NATURE CONCERNING THE PROPRIETY OF THE TERMS OF THE CONTRACT OF SALE AND OTHER INSTRUMENTS INCLUDING EXAMINATION OF TITLE PAPERS AND PREPARATION OF TITLE OPINION LETTER- AS DISTINGUISHED FROM THE SEARCHING OF TITLE AND PREPARATION OF THE PURCHASE CONTRACT--RELATING TO THE PURCHASE BY HIM OF A HOUSE IN TOLEDO, OHIO.

SUCH SERVICES WHILE STEMMING FROM PRUDENCE ON THE PART OF THE EMPLOYEE ARE, IN OUR OPINION, NOT TO BE CONSIDERED AS NORMAL OR USUAL EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE PURCHASE OR SALE OF MODERATELY PRICED RESIDENTIAL HOUSING AND, THEREFORE, NOT REIMBURSABLE EXPENSES WITHIN THE GUIDELINES OF SECTION 4.2C, REFERRED TO ABOVE. MR. BORDER SHOULD BE REQUIRED TO REFUND THE $85.

IT IS NOTED IN VOUCHER 404214 MR. BORDER WAS ALLOWED $230.20 FOR EXPENSES INCURRED IN THE PURCHASE OF AN OHIO HOME. THE FIGURES OF RECORD TOTAL $220.20. OF THE ITEMS CLAIMED CONCERNING THE SALE OF REAL ESTATE IN SPRINGFIELD, VIRGINIA, THE SETTLEMENT FEE OF $25 IS A REIMBURSABLE TYPE OF EXPENSE. ALSO, THE ITEM OF $25 FOR PREPARATION OF A DEED WITH RESPECT TO THE SALE OF THE RESIDENCE ORDINARILY WOULD BE FOR ALLOWANCE. HOWEVER, THE RECORD IS NOT ENTIRELY CLEAR AS TO WHETHER THE EMPLOYEE WAS REIMBURSED FOR BOTH OR EITHER TYPE OF SUCH COSTS FOR THE PURCHASE OF A RESIDENCE AT THE NEW DUTY STATION. THEREFORE, THE $50 COSTS CLAIMED MAY BE ALLOWED ONLY IF IT IS DETERMINED THAT THE SAME TYPES OF COSTS WERE NOT INCURRED AND ALLOWED INCIDENT TO THE PURCHASE OF THE NEW RESIDENCE.

ACTION ON THE VOUCHER WHICH IS RETURNED HEREWITH SHOULD BE TAKEN IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE FOREGOING.