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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR Data is current as of September 17, 2014

Title 32Subtitle BChapter XIISubchapter B → Part 1280


Title 32: National Defense


PART 1280—INVESTIGATING AND PROCESSING CERTAIN NONCONTRACTUAL CLAIMS AND REPORTING RELATED LITIGATION


Contents
§1280.1   Purpose and scope.
§1280.2   Definitions.
§1280.3   Significant changes.
§1280.4   Responsibilities.
§1280.5   Procedures.

Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301; 10 U.S.C. 125; 28 U.S.C. 2672; and DoD Directive 5105.22 dated December 9, 1965.

Source: 39 FR 19470, June 3, 1974, unless otherwise noted.

§1280.1   Purpose and scope.

(a) This part 1280 provides procedures for investigating and processing claims and related litigation:

(1) By civilian and military personnel of DLA for property lost or damaged incident to service (31 U.S.C. 240 through 243).

(2) Incident to use of Government vehicles and other property of the United States not cognizable under other law (10 U.S.C. 2737).

(3) Based on Negligence of Civilian and Military Employees under the Federal Tort Claims Act, 28 U.S.C. 1346(b), 2671 through 2680.

(4) In favor of the United States, other than contractual, for loss, damage, or destruction of real or personal property in the possession, custody, or control of DLA.

(b) This part 1280 is applicable to HQ DLA and DLA field activities, except nonappropriated funds and related activities established pursuant to DSAR 1330.2, Open Messes and Other Military Sundry Associations and Funds, and DSAR 1330.4, Civilian Nonappropriated Funds and Related Activities. Claims involving these activities are processed pursuant to the regulations referenced therein.

§1280.2   Definitions.

(a) Claims Investigating Officer. A military officer or civilian employee of DLA, appointed in accordance with this part 1280, to investigate and process claims within the purview of this part 1280.

(b) Member of the Army, member of the Navy, member of the Marine Corps, member of the Air Force. Officers and enlisted personnel of these Military Services.

§1280.3   Significant changes.

This revision provides current citations to the Army regulations which have superseded those previously prescribed for the processing of some claims. It reflects the new Army claims processing procedures effected upon the reorganization of the Army. Finally, it provides specific procedures for Air Force processed claims.

§1280.4   Responsibilities.

(a) DLA field activities. (1) Heads of DLA Primary Level Field Activities are responsible for:

(i) Designating a qualified individual under their command, preferably one experienced in the conduct of investigations, as the Claims Investigating Officer for the activity.

(ii) Authorizing Heads of subordinate activities to appoint Claims Investigating Officers where necessary.

(2) The Commander, DLA Administrative Support Center (DLASC) is responsible for designating a qualified individual, preferably one experienced in the conduct of investigations, as the Claims Investigating Officer for DLASC and HQ DLA.

(3) Claims Investigating Officers are responsible for the expeditious conduct of all investigations and the processing of reports in accordance with appropriate Departmental regulations as prescribed by this part 1280. To ensure prompt investigation of every incident while witnesses are available, and before damage has been repaired, the duties of personnel as Claims Investigating Officers will ordinarily have priority over any other assignments they may have.

(4) The Counsel, DLA Field Activities are responsible for:

(i) Receiving claims reports and information about related litigation, and processing these reports and information in accordance with this part 1280 and appropriate Departmental regulations.

(ii) Providing directions and guidance to Claims Investigating Officers in the investigation and processing of claims.

(b) The Counsel, DLA (DLAH-G) is responsible for:

(1) Providing guidance to Counsel at DLA field activities on all claims and litigation matters within the purview of this part 1280.

(2) Receiving claims reports and information on related litigation forwarded to HQ DLA, Attention: DLAH-G, and processing these in accordance with this part 1280 and appropriate Departmental regulations.

(3) Maintaining this part 1280 in a current status and reviewing it annually.

§1280.5   Procedures.1

1Copies of the Military Department regulations mentioned herein may be obtained from the Departments of the Army and Navy, and the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office.

(a) Claims by military and civilian personnel of DLA for property lost or damaged incident to service (31 U.S.C. 240 through 243). (1) The Claims Investigating Officer will conduct his investigation and prepare all necessary forms and reports in accordance with the appropriate portions of AR 27-20 where the claimant is a member of the Army or a DLA civilian employee; JAGINST 5800.7A where the claimant is a member of the Navy or Marine Corps; or AFM 112-1 where the claimant is a member of the Air Force.

(2) The completed report will be forwarded by the Claims Investigating Officer to one of the following activities for settlement:

(i) Where the claimant is a DLA civilian employee or a member of the Army; the Staff Judge Advocate designated in AR 27-20, appendix F, as the Area Claims Authority where the claim arose.

(ii) Where the claimant is a member of the Navy or Marine Corps the cognizant adjudicating authority as listed in JAGINST 5800.7A, paragraph 2124.

(iii) Where the claimant is a member of the Air Force; the Base Staff Judge Advocate of the nearest Air Force Base.

(b) Claims incident to the use of Government property not cognizable under any other law (10 U.S.C. 2737). (1) The Claims Investigating Officer will conduct his investigation and prepare all necessary forms and reports in accordance with the appropriate portions of AR 27-20 where the claimant is a member of the Army or a DLA civilian employee; JAGINST 5800.7A where the claimant is a member of the Navy or Marine Corps; or AFM 112-1 where the claimant is a member of the Air Force.

(2) The completed report will be forwarded by the Claims Investigating Officer to the Counsel for his activity or, if the activity has no Counsel, to the next higher echelon having such a position.

(3) The activity Counsel receiving the Claims Investigating Officer's report will review the report, and take all necessary action to assure that it is complete and in accordance with the appropriate regulation. He will forward the report together with his comments and recommendations to one of the following activities for settlement. Where the incident giving rise to the claim was occasioned by an act or omission of:

(i) DLA civilian personnel. Counsel, DLA.

(ii) A member of the Army. The Staff Judge Advocate designated in AR 27-20, appendix F, as the Area Claims Authority where the claim arose.

(iii) A member of the Navy or Marine Corps. The Director of the Navy Law Center in the Naval District in which the incident giving rise to the claim occurred.

(iv) A member of the Air Force. The Base Staff Judge Advocate of the Air Force Base nearest the place where the incident giving rise to the claim occurred.

(c) Claims under the Federal Tort Claims Act arising from negligence of DLA military or civilian personnel. (1) The Claims Investigating Officer will conduct his investigation and prepare all necessary forms and reports in accordance with the appropriate portions of AR 27-20 where the claim involves a member of the Army or a DLA civilian employee; JAGINST 5800.7A where the claim involves a member of the Navy or Marine Corps; or AFM 112-1 where the claim involves a member of the Air Force.

(2) The completed report of investigation will be forwarded by the Claims Investigating Officer to one of the following activities for settlement. Where the incident giving rise to the claim was occasioned by an act or omission of:

(i) DLA civilian personnel or a member of the Army. The Staff Judge Advocate designated in AR 27-20, appendix F, as the Area Claims Authority where the incident giving rise to the claim occurred.

(ii) A member of the Navy or Marine Corps. The Director of the Navy Law Center in the Naval District in which the incident giving rise to the claim occurred.

(iii) A member of the Air Force. The Base Staff Judge Advocate of the Air Force Base nearest the place where the incident giving rise to the claim occurred.

(d) Tort claims in favor of the United States for damage to or loss or destruction of DLA property, or property in its custody or control. (1) These claims will be investigated and processed in accordance with the provisions of AR 27-40, Chapter 5, except:

(i) The duties of the claims officer will be performed by the Claims Investigating Officer.

(ii) The duties of the Staff Judge Advocate will be performed by Counsel, except where the property is a GSA motor pool system vehicle (see paragraph (e) of this section).

(iii) The reports of the Claims Investigating Officer will be furnished direct to Counsel for his activity or, if his activity has no Counsel, to the next higher echelon having such a position.

(iv) With respect to reports referred to them, Counsel are authorized to give receipts for any payments received and to execute releases where payment in full is received, except where the property is a GSA motor pool system vehicle (see paragraph (e) of this section). Offers of compromise will be processed pursuant to DSAM 7000.1, chapter 12, section V, paragraph 120502.

(v) Where payment in full is not received after reasonable efforts have been made to collect the claim administratively, Counsel will refer the case directly to the U.S. Attorney unless:

(a) The amount of the claim exceeds $10,000, in which event the case will be referred to Counsel, DLA.

(b) The amount of the debt is less than $250; or the record clearly shows that the debtor is unable to pay; or the debtor cannot be located; in which event the file may be closed and the debt treated as an uncollectible which does not have to be referred to the General Accounting Office.

(2) If, at any stage of the processing of a claim under this paragraph (d), a claim is filed against the Government arising out of the same incident, or it becomes apparent that one will be filed, the claim under this paragraph (d) will be treated as a counterclaim, and included under the report filed in accordance with the applicable paragraph of this part 1280.

(e) Claims involving GSA motor pool system vehicles. (1) Where a motor pool system vehicle issued to a DLA activity is involved in an accident giving rise to a claim under the Federal Tort Claims Act, the claim will be handled pursuant to paragraph (c) of this section.

(2) In the event of damage to a motor pool system vehicle which is not due to the fault of the operator, Counsel receiving the report will submit the report to GSA's Regional Counsel for the region that issued the vehicle pursuant to the Federal Property Management Regulation, §101-39.805. Damages to motor pool system vehicles caused by the negligence of vehicle operator employed by DLA or caused by the negligence or misconduct of any other officer or employee of DLA are reimbursed to General Services Administration (GSA). Determination affixing responsibility will be made by the Counsel to which the report is referred, after considering the views of GSA.

(f) Reporting legal proceedings. (1) All process and pleadings served on any personnel or activity of DLA, and related to a claim covered by this part 1280 or involving an incident which may give rise to a claim covered by this part 1280, together with other immediately available data concerning the commencement of legal proceedings, will be promptly referred to Counsel for the activity involved, or, if the activity has no Counsel, to the next higher echelon having such a position.

(2) Any Military Service member or civilian employee of DLA (or his personal representative) against whom a domestic civil action or proceeding is brought for damage to property, or for personal injury or death, on account of his operation of a motor vehicle (Government- or privately-owned) in the scope of his employment (28 U.S.C. 2679) will:

(i) Upon receipt of process and pleadings or any other information regarding the commencement of such action or proceeding, immediately inform the Head of his activity and Counsel as specified in paragraph (f)(1) of this section.

(ii) Promptly deliver all process and pleadings served upon him, or an attested true copy thereof, to Counsel.

(3) Upon receipt of information or process and pleadings pursuant to paragraph (f)(1) or (2) of this section, Counsel will promptly prepare and process reports in accordance with the appropriate portions of AR 27-40 except that:

(i) If the incident giving rise to the litigation was occasioned by an act or omission of a member of the Navy or Marine Corps, or a member of the Air Force, information and reports required to be furnished to The Judge Advocate General of the Army will be furnished instead to The Judge Advocate General of the Navy and Air Force respectively.

(ii) If the litigation is under the Federal Tort Claims Act and no administrative claim has been filed, Counsel will immediately advise the U.S. Attorney and furnish him a report of all information the activity has with respect to the claim and an affidavit by the Claims Investigating Officer to the effect that no administrative claim has been filed. Two copies of the foregoing will be provided to the appropriate Military Service Judge Advocate General. If an administrative claim has been filed and has been referred to a Military Service, a copy of the process and pleadings and any information not previously furnished will be sent to the appropriate Military Service Judge Advocate General.



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