B-174630, JAN 12, 1972

B-174630: Jan 12, 1972

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SHEEHY'S ATTORNEY IS SUFFICIENT EVIDENCE FOR REIMBURSEMENT UNDER SECTION 4.2C OF OMB CIRCULAR NO. THE AMOUNT CLAIMED WAS ORIGINALLY ADMINISTRATIVELY SUSPENDED FROM MR. THE CLAIM IS NOW SUPPORTED BY A LETTER FROM THE CLAIMANT'S ATTORNEY WHICH READS IN PART AS FOLLOWS: "THE CHICAGO BAR ASSOCIATION. THE SCHEDULE SUGGESTS THAT THE MINIMUM FEE TO BE CHARGED A SELLER OF RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE WHERE THE SELLING PRICE IS BETWEEN $15. THE SALE PRICE WAS $35. 500.00 AND THE FEE CHARGED WAS $350.00 - LESS THAN THE MINIMUM FEE SUGGESTED. THE FEE WOULD HAVE BEEN HIGHER. I HAVE NOT CHARGED YOU FOR ANY SERVICE WHICH THE BROKER COULD HAVE LEGALLY PERFORMED.". PROVIDES THAT TO THE EXTENT SUCH COSTS HAVE NOT BEEN INCLUDED IN THE BROKER'S OR SIMILAR SERVICES FOR WHICH REIMBURSEMENT IS CLAIMED UNDER OTHER CATEGORIES.

B-174630, JAN 12, 1972

CIVILIAN EMPLOYEE - REIMBURSEMENT - PURCHASE OF RESIDENCE - ATTORNEY'S FEES DECISION ALLOWING A CLAIM BY MR. JOSEPH E. SHEEHY FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF ATTORNEY'S FEES INCIDENT TO HIS PURCHASE OF A RESIDENCE UPON TRANSFER OF DUTY STATION. A LETTER BY MR. SHEEHY'S ATTORNEY IS SUFFICIENT EVIDENCE FOR REIMBURSEMENT UNDER SECTION 4.2C OF OMB CIRCULAR NO. A-56. ACCORDINGLY, THE VOUCHER, IF OTHERWISE PROPER, MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT.

TO MR. LEE B. BENNETT:

THIS REFERS TO YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 29, 1971, REFERENCE 305.0, REQUESTING OUR DECISION AS TO THE PROPRIETY OF CERTIFYING FOR PAYMENT THE RECLAIM VOUCHER OF MR. JOSEPH E. SHEEHY COVERING ATTORNEY'S FEES PAID BY HIM INCIDENT TO HIS PURCHASE OF A RESIDENCE UPON TRANSFER OF DUTY STATION.

THE AMOUNT CLAIMED WAS ORIGINALLY ADMINISTRATIVELY SUSPENDED FROM MR. SHEEHY'S VOUCHER PENDING RECEIPT OF FURTHER INFORMATION. THE CLAIM IS NOW SUPPORTED BY A LETTER FROM THE CLAIMANT'S ATTORNEY WHICH READS IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

"THE CHICAGO BAR ASSOCIATION, OF WHICH I AM A MEMBER, HAS ISSUED TO CHICAGO LAWYERS A SUGGESTED MINIMUM FEE SCHEDULE WHICH COVERS REAL ESTATE TRANSACTIONS. THE SCHEDULE SUGGESTS THAT THE MINIMUM FEE TO BE CHARGED A SELLER OF RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE WHERE THE SELLING PRICE IS BETWEEN $15,000 AND $40,000 SHOULD BE 1% OF THE PRICE. IN YOUR CASE, THE SALE PRICE WAS $35,500.00 AND THE FEE CHARGED WAS $350.00 - LESS THAN THE MINIMUM FEE SUGGESTED.

"IF I HAD CHARGED YOU ON THE BASIS OF AN HOURLY RATE, THE FEE WOULD HAVE BEEN HIGHER. AT $30 PER HOUR, THE COMPILATION WOULD BE AS FOLLOWS:

"1. FOR CONFERENCES WITH CLIENTS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR REVISION OF BASIC CONTRACT; FOR REVIEW OF FINAL CONTRACT AND NOTE SIGNED BY BUYER AND CONFERENCE WITH BROKER

3 1/2 HRS.

"2. FOR EXAMINATION OF SELLERS TITLE DOCUMENTS AND ARRANGING FOR TITLE CONTINUATION FROM CHICAGO TITLE & TRUST CO. 1 HR.

"3. FOR CONFERENCES AND CORRESPONDENCE WITH TALMAN FEDERAL SAVINGS FOR SECURANCE OF CORRECT PAY-OFF STATEMENT OF EXISTING MORTGAGE; FOR CORRESPONDENCE WITH SELLERS ATTORNEY FOR SETTING OF CLOSING DATE; FOR EXAMINATION OF TITLE CONTINUATION REPORT FROM CHICAGO TITLE & TRUST CO.

3 HRS.

"4. FOR COMPUTATION OF CLOSING FIGURES AND PRORATIONS AND TELEPHONE CONFERENCES WITH BUYERS ATTORNEY WITH RESPECT TO SAME; FOR PREPARATION OF CLOSING DOCUMENTS AS FOLLOWS:

"1) CLOSING STATEMENT

"2) WARRANTY DEED

"3) AFFIDAVIT OF TITLE

"4) BILL OF SALE

"5) DECLARATION FOR TAX ASSESSOR; FOR CONFERENCE WITH SELLERS FOR EXECUTION OF CLOSING DOCUMENTS 5 1/2 HRS.

"5. FOR ATTENDANCE AT CLOSING 1 HR.

"TOTAL 14 HRS.

($420.00)

"REAL ESTATE BROKERS IN ILLINOIS CANNOT RENDER LEGAL SERVICES - THEIR PARTICIPATION BEING EXPRESSLY LIMITED BY LAW TO OBTAINING A BUYER AND THE PREPARATION OF THE PRELIMINARY OFFER OF PURCHASE. I HAVE NOT CHARGED YOU FOR ANY SERVICE WHICH THE BROKER COULD HAVE LEGALLY PERFORMED."

SECTION 4.2C OF OFFICE OF MANAGEMENT AND BUDGET CIRCULAR NO. A-56, REVISED JUNE 26, 1969, PROVIDES THAT TO THE EXTENT SUCH COSTS HAVE NOT BEEN INCLUDED IN THE BROKER'S 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.

THE ADDITIONAL EVIDENCE SHOWS THAT THE $350 FEE IS PRIMARILY RELATED TO THE CONDUCTING OF THE CLOSING AND TO THE PREPARATION OF DOCUMENTS AS AUTHORIZED UNDER SECTION 4.2C OF CIRCULAR NO. A-56. ACCORDINGLY, THE VOUCHER, WITH ATTACHMENTS, IS RETURNED HEREWITH AND MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT IF OTHERWISE PROPER.