Procedures and Practices for Legal Decisions and Opinions

GAO-06-1064SP: Sep 5, 2006

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This document contains procedures and practices for legal decisions and legal opinions of the Comptroller General of the Government Accountability Office. The Office of General Counsel (OGC) is the component of GAO responsible for providing opinions to Congress, its committees, and Members, and for providing decisions to accountable officers and heads of executive agencies. The decisions of the Comptroller General concerning the use and obligation of appropriated funds are grounded in statute and have a well-established and recognized heritage dating back to the mid-nineteenth century. OGC strives to produce thorough, well-researched, and well-reasoned decisions and opinions, informed by agency explanation of pertinent facts and its views on the law. This document explains our approach to rendering decisions and opinions, how to request a decision or opinion, and our normal practice after we have agreed to issue a decision or opinion. These procedures and practices, in large part, reflect long-standing practices of the Office of General Counsel, across the tenures of the various Comptrollers General.

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