B-180140, OCT 8, 1974

B-180140: Oct 8, 1974

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

AS HIS WIFE WAS HOSPITALIZED DURING THE 1-YEAR PERIOD AFTER HER DISCHARGE BUT DID NOT MAKE SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS WITHIN 1 YEAR AFTER THAT DATE PLUS A PERIOD EQUAL TO THE PERIOD OF HER HOSPITALIZATION OR TREATMENT AS REQUIRED BY PARAGRAPH M8260-4B OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS. THIS ACTION IS IN RESPONSE TO A LETTER DATED OCTOBER 27. COMMANDER BURCHARD CONTENDS THAT HE IS ENTITLED TO THE EXCESSIVE WEIGHT OF HIS SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS BECAUSE HIS AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE SHOULD HAVE BEEN COMBINED WITH A SIMILAR WEIGHT ALLOWANCE AUTHORIZED HIS WIFE. WHO WAS DISCHARGED FROM THE UNITED STATES NAVY. GIVING A MEDICAL OPINION THAT COMMANDER BURCHARD'S WIFE WAS UNABLE TO TRAVEL AND MAKE A GEOGRAPHICAL RELOCATION DURING THE PERIOD FROM 1966-1970.

B-180140, OCT 8, 1974

MEMBER UPON RETIREMENT ENTITLED TO SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS TO HIS SELECTED HOME WITH A MAXIMUM WEIGHT OF 12,000 POUNDS MAY NOT EXCEED THIS AMOUNT BY COMBINING WITH A SIMILAR WEIGHT ALLOWANCE AUTHORIZED HIS WIFE DISCHARGED FROM THE UNITED STATES NAVY WITH SEVERANCE PAY, AS HIS WIFE WAS HOSPITALIZED DURING THE 1-YEAR PERIOD AFTER HER DISCHARGE BUT DID NOT MAKE SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS WITHIN 1 YEAR AFTER THAT DATE PLUS A PERIOD EQUAL TO THE PERIOD OF HER HOSPITALIZATION OR TREATMENT AS REQUIRED BY PARAGRAPH M8260-4B OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS.

EXCESS COSTS OF SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS - LIEUTENANT COMMANDER NORMAN W. BURCHARD, USNR (RETIRED);

THIS ACTION IS IN RESPONSE TO A LETTER DATED OCTOBER 27, 1973, FROM LIEUTENANT COMMANDER NORMAN W. BURCHARD, USNR (RETIRED), SSN XXX-XX-XXXX, REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION BY THIS OFFICE OF A TRANSPORTATION AND CLAIMS DIVISION SETTLEMENT DATED OCTOBER 1, 1973, WHICH DISALLOWED HIS CLAIM FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF EXCESS COSTS CHARGED TO HIM FOR SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS WHICH EXCEEDED THE MAXIMUM AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE.

COMMANDER BURCHARD CONTENDS THAT HE IS ENTITLED TO THE EXCESSIVE WEIGHT OF HIS SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS BECAUSE HIS AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE SHOULD HAVE BEEN COMBINED WITH A SIMILAR WEIGHT ALLOWANCE AUTHORIZED HIS WIFE, WHO WAS DISCHARGED FROM THE UNITED STATES NAVY, BUT COULD NOT MOVE DUE TO HER MEDICAL CONDITION DURING THE PERIOD FROM SEPTEMBER 24, 1966, UNTIL HE RETIRED. IN SUBSTANTIATION OF HIS CONTENTION, HE HAS SUBMITTED A STATEMENT FROM MAJOR EDWIN J. KINGSLEY, M.D., ORTHOPAEDIC SERVICE, LETTERMAN ARMY MEDICAL CENTER, PRESIDIO OF SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, DATED OCTOBER 16, 1973, GIVING A MEDICAL OPINION THAT COMMANDER BURCHARD'S WIFE WAS UNABLE TO TRAVEL AND MAKE A GEOGRAPHICAL RELOCATION DURING THE PERIOD FROM 1966-1970.

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT BY BUPERS ORDER NO. 078719, DATE: JUNE 24, 1970, COMMANDER BURCHARD WAS RELIEVED FROM ACTIVE DUTY AND TRANSFERRED TO THE RETIRED LIST EFFECTIVE AUGUST 1, 1970. UPON RETIREMENT AS A LIEUTENANT COMMANDER HE WAS ENTITLED TO SHIPMENT OF HIS HOUSEHOLD GOODS WITH A MAXIMUM WEIGHT ALLOWANCE OF 12,000 POUNDS FROM HIS LAST PERMANENT DUTY STATION AT BREINIGSVILLE, PENNSYLVANIA, TO HIS SELECTED HOME IN SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA. HIS WIFE, LIEUTENANT JOANNE C. BURCHARD, USN 572597W, WAS DISCHARGED FROM THE UNITED STATES NAVY EFFECTIVE JANUARY 14, 1966. UPON HER SEPARATION, SHE WAS ENTITLED TO SHIPMENT OF HER HOUSEHOLD GOODS FROM HER LAST DUTY STATION TO A SELECTED HOME.

LIEUTENANT BURCHARD WAS INVOLVED IN AN AUTOMOBILE ACCIDENT AND HOSPITALIZED IN ALLENTOWN HOSPITAL, ALLENTOWN, PENNSYLVANIA, FROM SEPTEMBER 24, 19668 THROUGH JANUARY 30, 1967. SHE WAS A PATIENT IN THE U.S. NAVAL HOSPITAL, PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA, FROM JANUARY 30, 1967, TO NOVEMBER 23, 1967, FROM NOVEMBER 26, 1967, TO DECEMBER 22, 1967, AND FROM JANUARY 2, 1968, TO MAY 24, 1968. SHE WAS HOSPITALIZED AT ALLENTOWN HOSPITAL FROM MARCH 20, 1969, THROUGH APRIL 12, 1969, AND FROM OCTOBER 29, 1969, THROUGH NOVEMBER 15, 1969. FURTHER, LIEUTENANT BURCHARD WAS TREATED BY THE PUBLIC HEALTH NURSING SERVICE OF LEHIGH COUNTY, ALLENTOWN, PENNSYLVANIA, WITH 199 NURSING VISITS AND 6 PHYSICAL THERAPY VISITS DURING THE PERIOD FROM MAY 28, 1968, TO OCTOBER 29, 1969, AND 13 NURSING VISITS DURING THE PERIOD FROM NOVEMBER 17, 1969, TO DECEMBER 15, 1969. THERE IS NO EVIDENCE OF HOSPITALIZATION OR TREATMENT AFTER DECEMBER 15, 1969, UNTIL SHE WAS ADMITTED AS A PATIENT AT LETTERMAN ARMY MEDICAL CENTER, PRESIDIO OF SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, IN JULY 1972, WHERE TREATMENT HAS CONTINUED FOR INJURIES ARISING OUT OF THE SEPTEMBER 1966 ACCIDENT.

ON AUGUST 20, 1970, COMMANDER BURCHARD SHIPPED HOUSEHOLD GOODS EXCEEDING HIS AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE BY 1,851 POUNDS AND SUBSEQUENTLY HIS RETIRED RETAINER PAY WAS CHARGED FOR THE $777.30 EXCESS COST OF SHIPMENT, OF WHICH $194.34 HAS BEEN COLLECTED FROM HIM. THE EXCESSIVE WEIGHT IS CLAIMED AS AN AUTHORIZED SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS FOR HIS WIFE AS A FORMER MEMBER WHO SERVED OVER 8 YEARS' CONTINUOUS ACTIVE DUTY WITH NO SINGLE BREAK THEREIN OF MORE THAN 90 DAYS AND WHO WAS DISCHARGED WITH SEVERANCE PAY.

UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTIONS 404 AND 406 OF TITLE 37, U.S.C. A MEMBER OF A UNIFORMED SERVICE IS ENTITLED TO SELECT A HOME, TRAVEL THERETO, AND MOVE HIS DEPENDENTS AND HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS WITHIN 1 YEAR FROM TERMINATION OF ACTIVE SERVICE, EXCEPT THAT A LONGER PERIOD MAY BE PRESCRIBED IN REGULATIONS BY THE SECRETARIES CONCERNED.

PARAGRAPH M8260-1 OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS AUTHORIZED SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS TO THE HOME OF SELECTION OF A MEMBER DISCHARGED WITH SEVERANCE PAY TO BE EFFECTED WITHIN 1 YEAR FOLLOWING TERMINATION OF ACTIVE DUTY WITH THE EXCEPTIONS CONTAINED IN SUBPARAGRAPHS 4 AND 5. PARAGRAPH M8260-4B PROVIDES THAT A MEMBER WHO IS ENTITLED TO SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS TO A HOME OF SELECTION AND WHO IS CONFINED IN, OR UNDERGOING TREATMENT AT, A GOVERNMENT OR CIVILIAN HOSPITAL FOR ANY PERIOD OF TIME DURING THE 1-YEAR PERIOD FOLLOWING TERMINATION OF ACTIVE DUTY, WILL BE ENTITLED TO SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS UNTIL 1 YEAR AFTER DATE OF TERMINATION OF ACTIVE DUTY, PLUS A PERIOD EQUAL TO THE PERIOD OF THE MEMBER'S HOSPITALIZATION OR TREATMENT, EXCEPT WHEN A LONGER TIME LIMIT IS AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE SERVICE CONCERNED OR HIS DESIGNATED REPRESENTATIVE.

THEREFORE, THE PERIOD DURING WHICH LIEUTENANT BURCHARD WAS AUTHORIZED SHIPMENT OF HER HOUSEHOLD GOODS AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE WAS LIMITED TO 1 YEAR FOLLOWING HER DISCHARGE FROM THE NAVY PLUS A PERIOD EQUAL TO THE PERIOD DURING WHICH SHE WAS HOSPITALIZED AND TREATED. FROM JANUARY 15, 1966, THROUGH SEPTEMBER 23, 1966, SUBSEQUENT TO HER DISCHARGE FROM THE NAVY, BUT PRIOR TO HER HOSPITALIZATION, 252 DAYS OF HER 1-YEAR TIME LIMIT HAD EXPIRED. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT HOSPITALIZATION AND TREATMENT EXTENDED FROM SEPTEMBER 24, 1966, THROUGH DECEMBER 15, 1969. WHILE THERE IS INDICATION THAT LIEUTENANT BURCHARD HAD RECURRING REQUIREMENTS FOR FURTHER TREATMENT ARISING OUT OF THE ORIGINAL CAUSE FOR HOSPITALIZATION, THE RECORD DOES NOT DISCLOSE THAT SHE WAS HOSPITALIZED OR UNDERGOING TREATMENT ON AN OUTPATIENT BASIS FROM DECEMBER 15, 1969, UNTIL HOUSEHOLD GOODS ATTRIBUTED TO HER WERE SHIPPED ON HER HUSBAND'S RETIREMENT ORDERS ON AUGUST 20, 1970. THEREFORE, BEGINNING DECEMBER 16, 1969, THERE REMAINED 113 DAYS WHEREIN LIEUTENANT BURCHARD MIGHT SHIP HOUSEHOLD GOODS AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE IN HER OWN RIGHT. NO ADDITIONAL TIME LIMIT BEING AUTHORIZED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY OR HIS AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE IN ACCORDANCE WITH PARAGRAPH M8260-4B OF THE JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, THE PERIOD OF ENTITLEMENT FOR HER SHIPMENT OF SUCH HOUSEHOLD GOODS EXPIRED ON APRIL 7, 1970.

SINCE SHIPMENT OF THE HOUSEHOLD GOODS BY COMMANDER BURCHARD WAS MADE ON AUGUST 20, 1970, SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS EXCEEDING THE MAXIMUM WEIGHT ALLOWANCE, MAY NOT BE ATTRIBUTED TO HIS WIFE, LIEUTENANT BURCHARD.

CONSEQUENTLY, WE MUST SUSTAIN THE ACTION OF THE TRANSPORTATION AND CLAIMS DIVISION IN DETERMINING THAT COMMANDER BURCHARD PROPERLY IS CHARGED FOR THE EXCESS COSTS OF SHIPMENT OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS EXCEEDING HIS MAXIMUM AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE.