B-167839, NOV. 6, 1969

B-167839: Nov 6, 1969

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S. DISTRICT COURT CASE IS ADVISED THAT FEDERAL CLAIMS COLLECTION ACT OF 1966. ALTHOUGH AUTHORITY TO COMPROMISE THIS CLASS OF CLAIMS IS EXPRESSLY RESERVED IN GAO). IF GAO IS UNSUCCESSFUL IN COLLECTION IT REFERS DEBT TO JUSTICE DEPT. THERE IS NO FEDERAL AGENCY WHOSE ACTIVITIES CONSIST SOLELY OF COLLECTING DEBTS DUE U.S. APPOINTMENT OF ATTORNEY TO DISCUSS CASE ON AMICUS CURIAE BASIS IS MATTER FOR CONSIDERATION OF JUSTICE DEPT. DURST: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 28. YOU REQUEST TO BE ADVISED AS TO WHICH GOVERNMENT AGENCY IS THE "COLLECTION AGENCY" FOR THE GOVERNMENT. THIS RESPONSIBILITY FOR COLLECTION ACTION INCLUDES THOSE DEBTS WHICH ARE DETERMINED TO BE DUE ON ACCOUNT OF ILLEGAL.

B-167839, NOV. 6, 1969

FEDERAL CLAIMS COLLECTION ACT OF 1966--APPLICATION OF ACT PLAINTIFF IN U. S. DISTRICT COURT CASE IS ADVISED THAT FEDERAL CLAIMS COLLECTION ACT OF 1966, 31 U.S.C. 951-953, PLACES RESPONSIBILITY IN FEDERAL AGENCIES FOR COLLECTING DEBTS DUE U.S. RESULTING FROM THEIR ACTIVITIES (INCLUDING DEBTS DUE ON ACCOUNT OF ILLEGAL, IMPROPER, OR INCORRECT PAYMENTS SHOWN IN GAO NOTICES OF EXCEPTION, ALTHOUGH AUTHORITY TO COMPROMISE THIS CLASS OF CLAIMS IS EXPRESSLY RESERVED IN GAO); DEBTS WHICH CANNOT BE COLLECTED, COMPROMISED, TERMINATED, OR SUSPENDED BY AGENCY INVOLVED MUST BE REPORTED TO GAO, AND IF GAO IS UNSUCCESSFUL IN COLLECTION IT REFERS DEBT TO JUSTICE DEPT.; THERE IS NO FEDERAL AGENCY WHOSE ACTIVITIES CONSIST SOLELY OF COLLECTING DEBTS DUE U.S.; AND APPOINTMENT OF ATTORNEY TO DISCUSS CASE ON AMICUS CURIAE BASIS IS MATTER FOR CONSIDERATION OF JUSTICE DEPT.

TO MR. WALTER C. DURST:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 28, 1969, MENTIONING THE ABOVE -ENTITLED CASE.

YOU STATE THAT YOU WANT TO BE SURE THAT THE CASE HAS COME TO THE ATTENTION OF THE PROPER GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS "WHO WOULD APPOINT AN ATTORNEY IN LOS ANGELES" WITH WHOM YOU CAN DISCUSS THE CASE ON AN AMICUS CURIAE BASIS OR OTHERWISE. YOU REQUEST TO BE ADVISED AS TO WHICH GOVERNMENT AGENCY IS THE "COLLECTION AGENCY" FOR THE GOVERNMENT, FULL TIME WITHOUT OTHER DUTIES.

THE FEDERAL CLAIMS COLLECTION ACT OF 1966, 31 U.S.C. 951-953, PLACES THE RESPONSIBILITY IN FEDERAL ADMINISTRATIVE AGENCIES FOR COLLECTING DEBTS DETERMINED TO BE DUE THE UNITED STATES WHICH ARISE AS A RESULT OF THEIR ACTIVITIES. THIS INCLUDES THE AUTHORITY TO COMPROMISE, TERMINATE OR SUSPEND COLLECTION ACTION. ALSO, THIS RESPONSIBILITY FOR COLLECTION ACTION INCLUDES THOSE DEBTS WHICH ARE DETERMINED TO BE DUE ON ACCOUNT OF ILLEGAL, IMPROPER OR INCORRECT PAYMENTS SHOWN IN GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE NOTICES OF EXCEPTION ISSUED TO CERTIFYING OR DISBURSING OFFICERS, BUT THE AUTHORITY TO COMPROMISE THIS CLASS OF CLAIMS IS EXPRESSLY RESERVED IN THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE. FURTHER, EACH AGENCY IS RESPONSIBLE FOR COOPERATING AND ASSISTING IN COLLECTION OF DEBTS KNOWN TO BE DUE THE UNITED STATES ARISING OUT OF THE ACTIVITIES OF OTHER AGENCIES AND THIS RESPONSIBILITY IS NOT LIMITED TO THOSE CASES IN WHICH AMOUNTS DUE DEBTORS ARE AUTHORIZED BY STATUTE TO BE WITHHELD AND APPLIED IN LIQUIDATION OF THEIR DEBTS.

GENERALLY, ALL DEBTS DUE THE UNITED STATES WHICH CANNOT BE COLLECTED, COMPROMISED, TERMINATED OR SUSPENDED BY THE FEDERAL AGENCY INVOLVED, MUST BE REPORTED TO THE CLAIMS DIVISION OF THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE FOR COLLECTION.

IF WE ARE UNSUCCESSFUL IN COLLECTING A DEBT DUE THE UNITED STATES, WE REFER THE DEBT TO THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE FOR APPROPRIATE COLLECTION ACTION. INSOFAR AS WE ARE AWARE, THERE IS NO FEDERAL AGENCY WHOSE ACTIVITIES CONSIST SOLELY OF COLLECTING DEBTS DUE THE UNITED STATES.

AS TO APPOINTMENT OF AN ATTORNEY TO DISCUSS THE CASE ON AN AMICUS CURIAE BASIS, SINCE THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE GENERALLY REPRESENTS THE UNITED STATES IN COURT PROCEEDINGS, THIS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A MATTER FOR ITS CONSIDERATION.