• United States Code
    • TITLE 31 - MONEY AND FINANCE
      • SUBTITLE III - FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT
        • CHAPTER 37 - CLAIMS
          • SUBCHAPTER I - GENERAL
            • Section 3702
              • Section 3702. Authority to settle claims


(a) Except as provided in this chapter or another law, all claims of or against the United States Government shall be settled as follows: (1) The Secretary of Defense shall settle - (A) claims involving uniformed service members' pay, allowances, travel, transportation, payments for unused accrued leave, retired pay, and survivor benefits; and (B) claims by transportation carriers involving amounts collected from them for loss or damage incurred to property incident to shipment at Government expense. (2) The Director of the Office of Personnel Management shall settle claims involving Federal civilian employees' compensation and leave. (3) The Administrator of General Services shall settle claims involving expenses incurred by Federal civilian employees for official travel and transportation, and for relocation expenses incident to transfers of official duty station. (4) The Director of the Office of Management and Budget shall settle claims not otherwise provided for by this subsection or another provision of law. (b)(1) A claim against the Government presented under this section must contain the signature and address of the claimant or an authorized representative. The claim must be received by the official responsible under subsection (a) for settling the claim or by the agency that conducts the activity from which the claim arises within 6 years after the claim accrues except - (A) as provided in this chapter or another law; or (B) a claim of a State, the District of Columbia, or a territory or possession of the United States. (2) When the claim of a member of the armed forces accrues during war or within 5 years before war begins, the claim must be received within 5 years after peace is established or within the period provided in paragraph (1) of this subsection, whichever is later. (3) A claim that is not received in the time required under this subsection shall be returned with a copy of this subsection, and no further communication is required. (c) One-Year Limit for Check Claims. - (1) Any claim on account of a Treasury check shall be barred unless it is presented to the agency that authorized the issuance of such check within 1 year after the date of issuance of the check or the effective date of this subsection, whichever is later. (2) Nothing in this subsection affects the underlying obligation of the United States, or any agency thereof, for which a Treasury check was issued. (d) The official responsible under subsection (a) for settling the claim shall report to Congress on a claim against the Government that is timely presented under this section that may not be adjusted by using an existing appropriation, and that the official believes Congress should consider for legal or equitable reasons. The report shall include recommendations of the official. (e)(1) Upon the request of the Secretary concerned (as defined in section 101 of title 37, United States Code), the Secretary of Defense may waive the time limitations set forth in subsection (b) or (c) in the case of a claim for pay, allowances, or payment for unused accrued leave under title 37 or a claim for retired pay under title 10 and, subject to paragraph (2), settle the claim. (2) Payment of a claim settled under paragraph (1) shall be made from an appropriation that is available, for the fiscal year in which the payment is made, for the same purpose as the appropriation to which the obligation claimed would have been charged if the obligation had been timely paid. (3) This subsection does not apply to a claim in excess of $25,000.





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