[Questions Concerning Settlement of Age Discrimination Complaint]

B-215672: Mar 18, 1985

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GAO was asked to determine the propriety of an informal settlement of the claim of an Army Corps of Engineers employee. The employee claimed age discrimination and the Corps agreed to pay him a lump sum that included backpay, net salary loss, annuity loss, and attorneys' fees. GAO held that: (1) it would be proper for the agency to pay the claimant a lump-sum settlement; (2) the amount agreed upon was improper because it exceeded the amount of backpay that the employee could have been awarded if his complaint were resolved in his favor; (3) the Corps was prohibited from paying for the claimant's attorneys' fees; and (4) as an administrative award, the settlement could not be paid from the permanent indefinite appropriation for judgments that was established under 31 U.S.C. 1304.

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