B-165740, JANUARY 13, 1969, 48 COMP. GEN. 469

B-165740: Jan 13, 1969

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OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES - TRANSFERS - RELOCATION EXPENSES - LEASE TERMINATION AN EMPLOYEE WHO IN CONNECTION WITH THE TRANSFER OF HIS OFFICIAL DUTY STATION TERMINATES HIS APARTMENT AT THE OLD DUTY STATION AT THE EXPIRATION OF HIS LEASE AND IS REQUIRED TO PAY FOR PAINTING. REPAIR OF BLINDS AND STOCK TRANSFER IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR THESE EXPENSES. OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES - TRANSFERS - RELOCATION EXPENSES - ATTORNEY FEES AN EMPLOYEE WHO INCIDENT TO THE TRANSFER OF HIS OFFICIAL DUTY STATION PURCHASES A RESIDENCE AT HIS NEW DUTY STATION AND IS REIMBURSED THE ATTORNEY FEES HE PAID FOR THE PREPARATION OF NOTES AND TRUSTS. AS THE FEE PAID FOR LEGAL REPRESENTATION AND ADVICE IN CONNECTION WITH A PURCHASE OR SALE OF A RESIDENCE IS NOT REIMBURSABLE UNDER SECTION 4.

B-165740, JANUARY 13, 1969, 48 COMP. GEN. 469

OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES - TRANSFERS - RELOCATION EXPENSES - LEASE TERMINATION AN EMPLOYEE WHO IN CONNECTION WITH THE TRANSFER OF HIS OFFICIAL DUTY STATION TERMINATES HIS APARTMENT AT THE OLD DUTY STATION AT THE EXPIRATION OF HIS LEASE AND IS REQUIRED TO PAY FOR PAINTING, CLEANING, REPAIR OF BLINDS AND STOCK TRANSFER IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT FOR THESE EXPENSES, 5 U.S.C. 5724A ONLY AUTHORIZING REIMBURSEMENT OF THOSE EXPENSES THAT RESULT FROM THE TERMINATION OF AN UNEXPIRED LEASE AND NOT THE EXPENSES CHARGEABLE AT THE EXPIRATION OF A LEASE. OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES - TRANSFERS - RELOCATION EXPENSES - ATTORNEY FEES AN EMPLOYEE WHO INCIDENT TO THE TRANSFER OF HIS OFFICIAL DUTY STATION PURCHASES A RESIDENCE AT HIS NEW DUTY STATION AND IS REIMBURSED THE ATTORNEY FEES HE PAID FOR THE PREPARATION OF NOTES AND TRUSTS, SETTLEMENT FEE, TITLE EXAMINATION, AND PREPARATION OF AN APPLICATION FOR TITLE INSURANCE--- SERVICES AUTHORIZED BY SECTION 4.2C OF THE BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-56--- MAY NOT ALSO BE REIMBURSED THE FEES PAID TO A SECOND ATTORNEY TO PREPARE THE CONTRACT AND OTHER INSTRUMENTS INVOLVED IN THE PURCHASE, CHECKING AND EXAMINING VARIOUS DOCUMENTS, AND THE TRAVEL EXPENSES INCURRED BY THAT ATTORNEY TO BE PRESENT AT SETTLEMENT, AS THE FEE PAID FOR LEGAL REPRESENTATION AND ADVICE IN CONNECTION WITH A PURCHASE OR SALE OF A RESIDENCE IS NOT REIMBURSABLE UNDER SECTION 4, CIRCULAR NO. A- 56.

TO LUELLA S. HOWARD, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT, JANUARY 13, 1969:

WE REFER TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 2, 1968, BY WHICH YOU REQUEST OUR ADVANCE DECISION WHETHER YOU MAY PROPERLY CERTIFY FOR PAYMENT TWO RECLAIM VOUCHERS OF MR. ROY A. CUNEO TO REIMBURSE HIM THE CLEANING FEE HE PAID IN CONNECTION WITH MOVING OUT OF HIS APARTMENT IN NEW YORK, NEW YORK, AND THE ATTORNEY FEE HE PAID IN CONNECTION WITH THE PURCHASE OF A RESIDENCE IN RESTON, VIRGINIA, INCIDENT TO HIS TRANSFER FROM NEW YORK TO WASHINGTON, D.C., AS AN EMPLOYEE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT.

IN CONNECTION WITH THE TERMINATION OF THE LEASE OF HIS APARTMENT IN NEW YORK, MR. CUNEO WAS REQUIRED TO PAY $237.40 FOR PAINTING, CLEANING, REPAIR OF BLINDS AND STOCK TRANSFER, PLUS ADDITIONAL CHARGES FOR WHICH REIMBURSEMENT WAS NOT CLAIMED. THE CHARGES FOR PAINTING, REPAIR OF BLINDS, AND TRANSFER OF STOCK WERE REIMBURSED TO MR. CUNEO BUT REIMBURSEMENT OF THE CLEANING CHARGE OF $40 WAS DISALLOWED. THE TERMS OF THE LEASE, A COPY OF WHICH IS ATTACHED TO THE VOUCHER, DO NOT MAKE THE PAYMENT OF ANY OF THE CHARGES MENTIONED CONTINGENT UPON THE LESSEE'S TERMINATION OF HIS LEASE PRIOR TO THE DATE ON WHICH IT EXPIRED. THE LEASE PROVIDES THAT THE LESSEE SHALL BE LIABLE FOR SUCH CHARGES EVEN IF THE LEASE IS TERMINATED ON THE DATE IT EXPIRES. FURTHER, THE LEASE PROVIDES THAT THE LESSEE IS LIABLE FOR LOSSES INCURRED BY THE LESSOR AS A RESULT OF AN EARLY TERMINATION. THERE IS NO INDICATION IN THE FILE THAT MR. CUNEO WAS REQUIRED TO PAY ANY AMOUNT AS A RESULT OF THE TERMINATION OF THIS LEASE BEFORE IT EXPIRED. SINCE 5 U.S.C. 5724A AUTHORIZES REIMBURSEMENT OF EXPENSES RESULTING FROM THE TERMINATION OF AN UNEXPIRED LEASE BUT NOT EXPENSES CHARGEABLE AT THE EXPIRATION OF A LEASE, MR. CUNEO IS NOT ENTITLED TO REIMBURSEMENT OF THE $40 CLAIMED FOR CLEANING HIS NEW YORK APARTMENT, AND THE $197.43 PAID HIM FOR EXPENSES INCIDENT TO VACATING THAT APARTMENT SHOULD BE RECOVERED.

IN CONNECTION WITH HIS PURCHASE OF A RESIDENCE IN THE VICINITY OF HIS NEW OFFICIAL STATION, MR. CUNEO PAID AND WAS REIMBURSED THE CHARGES OF A FIRM OF ATTORNEYS IN FAIRFAX, VIRGINIA, FOR PREPARATION OF NOTES AND TRUSTS, ATTORNEY'S SETTLEMENT FEE, TITLE EXAMINATION AND PREPARATION OF AN APPLICATION FOR TITLE INSURANCE. IN ADDITION TO THOSE LEGAL FEES, MR. CUNEO PAID A NEW YORK ATTORNEY $504 FOR VARIOUS SERVICES IN CONNECTION WITH THE PURCHASE TRANSACTION. REIMBURSEMENT OF THAT FEE WAS DISALLOWED AND IS THE SUBJECT OF ONE OF THE RECLAIM VOUCHERS PRESENTED.

THE NEW YORK ATTORNEY ADVISED MR. CUNEO THAT HIS FEE INCLUDED CHARGES FOR PREPARATION OF THE CONTRACT AND OTHER INSTRUMENTS INVOLVED IN THE PURCHASE, CHECKING AND EXAMINING VARIOUS DOCUMENTS, AND TRAVEL TO THE WASHINGTON AREA TO BE PRESENT AT SETTLEMENT. IT APPEARS THAT FOR THE PURPOSE OF CONSUMMATING THE PURCHASE THE DOCUMENTATION PREPARED BY THE ATTORNEYS IN FAIRFAX WOULD HAVE BEEN SUFFICIENT AND THAT THE ADDITIONAL SERVICES RENDERED BY THE NEW YORK ATTORNEY WERE OBTAINED BY MR. CUNEO AS A MATTER OF PRUDENCE. LEGAL SERVICES FOR WHICH REIMBURSEMENT IS AUTHORIZED ARE THE TYPES OF SERVICES ENUMERATED IN SECTION 4.2C OF BUREAU OF THE BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-56 WHICH ARE ESSENTIAL TO THE SALE OR PURCHASE TRANSACTION. AN ATTORNEY FEE PAID BY AN EMPLOYEE FOR LEGAL REPRESENTATION AND ADVICE IN CONNECTION WITH THE SALE OR PURCHASE OF A RESIDENCE IS NOT REIMBURSABLE UNDER SECTION 4, CIRCULAR NO. A-56. SEE B-161891, AUGUST 21, 1967.

FOR THE REASONS STATED THE VOUCHERS WITH ATTACHMENTS WHICH ARE RETURNED HEREWITH MAY NOT PROPERLY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT.