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OPM Contact: Melissa Drummond
An employee of the [agency] requests living quarters allowance for the period from July 27, 1969 through March 31, 1973. The claimant originally wrote to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) on June 1, 2000. Since the employing agency had not reviewed the claim as required by CFR 178, OPMs Office of Workforce Compensation and Performance Service forwarded the claim to the employing agency. The agency denied the request. The claimant then forwarded the request to OPMs Office of Merit Systems Oversight and Effectiveness, which is responsible for adjudicating compensation claims following an agencys denial of a claim. For the reasons stated below, we do not have the authority to settle this claim.
In accordance with the Barring Act, 31 U.S.C. 3702(b)(1), every claim against the United States is barred unless such claim is received within six years after the date such claim first accrued. Matter of Robert O. Schultz, B-261461 (November 27, 1995). The Barring Act does not merely establish administrative guidelines; it specifically prescribes the time within which a claim must be received in order for it to be considered on its merits. Matter of Nguyen Thi Hao, B-253096, (August 11, 1995). OPM does not have any authority to disregard the provisions of the Barring Act, make exceptions to its provisions, or waive the time limitation that it imposes. See Matter of Nguyen Thi Hao, supra; Matter of Jackie A. Murphy , B-251301 (April 23, 1993); Matter of Alfred L. Lillie, B-209955, May 31, 1983. Thus, the law precludes us from considering this claim.
In summary, the claim for living quarters allowance for the period from July 27, 1969 through March 31, 1973 is barred, because the claim was not received until on or around
June 1, 2000, which is more than six years from the date it first accrued. This settlement is final. No further administrative review is available within OPM. Nothing in this settlement limits the claimants right to bring an action in an appropriate United States Court.
[claimant's name and address]
Mr. Donald Winstead Assistant Director for Compensation Policy Office of Personnel Management 1900 E Street, NW Room 7H31 Washington, DC 20415-8000