B-80245, FEBRUARY 21, 1949, 28 COMP. GEN. 472

B-80245: Feb 21, 1949

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EXPENSE ALTHOUGH A DIVORCED OFFICER'S UNMARRIED MINOR CHILD IS PURSUING A COURSE OF FULL TIME INSTITUTIONAL TRAINING UNDER THE SERVICEMEN'S READJUSTMENT ACT OF 1944. 1949: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 11. YOU STATE THAT THE OFFICER DOES NOT HAVE A COPY OF HIS DIVORCE DECREE. THAT THE CHILD "WILL BE ATTENDING YALE UNIVERSITY THIS FALL AND RECEIVING THE AMOUNT PAYABLE TO A SINGLE MAN UNDER THE G.I. THERE WAS SUBMITTED WITH YOUR LETTER THE OFFICER'S VOUCHER. IN WHICH HE CERTIFIES THAT THE ALLOWANCES ARE CLAIMED ON ACCOUNT OF HIS UNMARRIED MINOR CHILD ( CHARLES L. THAT THE CHILD IS DEPENDENT UPON HIM. ON THE REVERSE SIDE OF THE VOUCHER THE OFFICER STATES THAT A COPY OF HIS DIVORCE DECREE WAS FILED IN DECEMBER 1942.

B-80245, FEBRUARY 21, 1949, 28 COMP. GEN. 472

RENTAL AND SUBSISTENCE ALLOWANCES - DEPENDENTS - UNMARRIED MINOR CHILD RECEIVING TRAINING AT GOVT. EXPENSE ALTHOUGH A DIVORCED OFFICER'S UNMARRIED MINOR CHILD IS PURSUING A COURSE OF FULL TIME INSTITUTIONAL TRAINING UNDER THE SERVICEMEN'S READJUSTMENT ACT OF 1944, AS AMENDED, AND RECEIVING THE AUTHORIZED SUBSISTENCE ALLOWANCE FOR A VETERAN WITHOUT A DEPENDENT OR DEPENDENTS, SUCH FACT DOES NOT CONSTITUTE AN EMANCIPATION OF THE CHILD SO AS TO PRECLUDE PAYMENT TO THE OFFICER OF INCREASED RENTAL AND SUBSISTENCE ALLOWANCES UNDER THE PAY READJUSTMENT ACT OF 1942 ON ACCOUNT OF DEPENDENTS (UNMARRIED MINOR CHILD).

ASSISTANT COMPTROLLER GENERAL YATES TO COMMANDER R. E. PRENTICE, U.S. NAVAL RESERVE, FEBRUARY 21, 1949:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 11, 1948, ADDRESSED TO THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE, FIELD BRANCH, CLEVELAND, OHIO, REQUESTING DECISION WHETHER LIEUTENANT COMMANDER CHARLES P. STONE, 222764, USNR, MAY BE CREDITED WITH ALLOWANCES AS FOR AN OFFICER WITH DEPENDENT (UNMARRIED MINOR CHILD) FOR THE PERIOD COMMENCING SEPTEMBER 11, 1948. YOU STATE THAT THE OFFICER DOES NOT HAVE A COPY OF HIS DIVORCE DECREE; THAT THE CHILD "WILL BE ATTENDING YALE UNIVERSITY THIS FALL AND RECEIVING THE AMOUNT PAYABLE TO A SINGLE MAN UNDER THE G.I. BILL OF RIGHTS; " AND FURTHER REQUEST TO BE ADVISED WHETHER THE LATTER FACT PRECLUDES PAYMENT OF ADDITIONAL ALLOWANCES TO THE OFFICER ON ACCOUNT OF DEPENDENTS UNMARRIED MINOR CHILD).

THERE WAS SUBMITTED WITH YOUR LETTER THE OFFICER'S VOUCHER, NAV. S. AND A. FORM 531, DATED SEPTEMBER 11, 1948, IN WHICH HE CERTIFIES THAT THE ALLOWANCES ARE CLAIMED ON ACCOUNT OF HIS UNMARRIED MINOR CHILD ( CHARLES L. STONE); THAT THE CHILD IS DEPENDENT UPON HIM; THAT HE FORWARDS TO THE WASHINGTON LOAN AND TRUST COMPANY, WASHINGTON, D.C., FOR THE CARE, MAINTENANCE, SUPPORT, AND EDUCATION OF THE CHILD THE AMOUNT OF $100 PER MONTH, AS EVIDENCED BY AN ALLOTMENT COMMENCING WITH THE MONTH OF OCTOBER 1948; AND THAT THERE HAS BEEN NO CHANGE IN THE DEPENDENCY STATUS OF THE CHILD SINCE DECEMBER 1942. ON THE REVERSE SIDE OF THE VOUCHER THE OFFICER STATES THAT A COPY OF HIS DIVORCE DECREE WAS FILED IN DECEMBER 1942, WITH THE DISBURSING OFFICER, NAVAL AIR STATION, QUONSET POINT, RHODE ISLAND; THAT THE DEPENDENCY STATUS OF THE CHILD REMAINS THE SAME AS IN 1942, AND THAT THE CHILD AGAINS BECAME HIS DEPENDENT ON SEPTEMBER 11, 1948, THE DATE OF THE CHILD'S RELEASE FROM THE UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS.

IT APPEARS FROM THE RECORDS ON FILE IN THIS OFFICE THAT THE OFFICER'S WIFE WAS GRANTED A FINAL DECREE OF DIVORCE ON AUGUST 12, 1942, IN THE SECOND JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT OF THE STATE OF NEVADA, IN AND FOR THE COUNTY OF WASHOE, IN THE CASE OF FRANCES MCKEE STONE, PLAINTIFF V. CHARLES I. STONE, DEFENDANT; THAT THE OFFICER'S CHILD WAS BORN ON MARCH 29, 1929; AND THAT WHILE THE OFFICER IS NOT REQUIRED BY THE DECREE OF DIVORCE TO CONTRIBUTE TOWARD THE CARE, MAINTENANCE, SUPPORT, AND EDUCATION OF THE CHILD, THE OFFICER, IN A SEPARATION AGREEMENT DATED JUNE 24, 1942, AGREED TO SUPPORT THE CHILD.

THE GENERAL RULE IS THAT THIS OFFICE WILL NOT QUESTION OTHERWISE PROPER PAYMENTS OF ADDITIONAL ALLOWANCES TO DIVORCED OFFICERS ON ACCOUNT OF LEGITIMATE UNMARRIED CHILDREN UNDER 21 YEARS OF AGE EXCEPT WHERE IT IS SHOWN THAT A DIVORCED OFFICER HAS BEEN ABSOLVED FROM THE RESPONSIBILITY OF SUPPORTING HIS CHILD OR CHILDREN, OR THAT HIS CHILD OR CHILDREN HAVE BEEN EMANCIPATED, OR THAT THE DIVORCED OFFICER HAS REFUSED TO SUPPORT HIS CHILD OR CHILDREN. 23 COMP. GEN. 71, AS AMPLIFIED BY 23 COMP. GEN. 454; ID. 625; 24 ID. 233.

THE CLAIM HERE INVOLVED IS FOR A PERIOD FOLLOWING THE DATE THE CHILD WAS DISCHARGED FROM THE UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS AND DURING HIS MINORITY. HENCE, UNTIL THE CHILD BECOMES 21 YEARS OF AGE, HE IS A "DEPENDENT" WITHIN THE MEANING OF THAT TERM AS USED IN SECTION 4 OF THE PAY READJUSTMENT ACT OF 1942, 56 STAT. 361. SEE 26 COMP. GEN. 195. AND, WHILE THE SAID CHILD NOW MAY BE AT YALE UNIVERSITY PURSUING A COURSE OF FULL-TIME INSTITUTIONAL TRAINING UNDER THE SO-CALLED G.I. BILL OF RIGHTS, THAT IS, THE SERVICEMEN'S READJUSTMENT ACT OF 1944, 58 STAT. 284, 289, AS AMENDED, AND MAY BE IN RECEIPT OF THE SUBSISTENCE ALLOWANCE AUTHORIZED FOR PAYMENT TO A VETERAN WITHOUT A DEPENDENT OR DEPENDENTS, SUCH FACT WOULD NOT CONSTITUTE AN EMANCIPATION SUCH AS THAT CONTEMPLATED IN 23 COMP. GEN. 71, SUPRA, SO AS TO PRECLUDE PAYMENT OF ADDITIONAL ALLOWANCES TO THE OFFICER ON ACCOUNT OF THE SAID CHILD.

THE EVIDENCE SUBMITTED WITH YOUR LETTER, TOGETHER WITH THAT ON FILE IN THIS OFFICE, ESTABLISHES THAT THE OFFICER HAS A DEPENDENT UNMARRIED MINOR CHILD WITHIN THE MEANING OF SECTION 4 OF THE PAY READJUSTMENT ACT OF 1942, SUPRA, AND ACCORDINGLY, PAYMENT OF ALLOWANCES TO COMMANDER STONE AS FOR AN OFFICER WITH DEPENDENTS (UNMARRIED MINOR CHILD) WILL BE PASSED TO CREDIT, IF OTHERWISE PROPERLY PAYABLE, FOR THE DATE--- APPARENTLY SEPTEMBER 11, 1948--- FOLLOWING THE DATE THE CHILD WAS DISCHARGED FROM THE UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS, AND SO LONG THEREAFTER AS THERE IS NO MATERIAL CHANGE IN THE DEPENDENCY STATUS OF THE SAID CHILD. SEE, GENERALLY, 24 COMP. GEN. 233.

THE ORIGINAL VOUCHER, NAV. S. AND A. FORM 531, IS RETURNED HEREWITH, THE SIGNED COPY THEREOF BEING RETAINED IN THIS OFFICE.

THIS DECISION, OR A COPY THEREOF, SHOULD BE INCLUDED IN THE ACCOUNT WHEREIN CREDIT FOR PAYMENT UNDER AUTHORITY HEREOF IS CLAIMED.