(a) General. A special act is one authorizing the payment of benefits to a particular person or persons. If a beneficiary in a special act has no claim before the Department of Veterans Affairs, a formal application must be filed before benefits may be awarded.
(b) Limitations. Where the rate, commencement, and duration are fixed by a special act, they are not subject to be varied by the provisions and limitations of the public laws, but where not fixed, the rate and continuance of the benefit is subject to variance in accordance with the public laws.
(c) Provisions of act.(1) When pension or compensation is granted by a special act, which fixes the rate and commencement, the rate thereunder cannot be increased nor can any other pension or compensation be paid in the absence of the payee's election, unless the special act expressly states that the benefit granted thereby is in addition to the benefit which the person is entitled to receive under any public law.
(2) If a special act corrects the nature of separation from military service and does not grant pension or compensation directly, the claimant acquires a status so that he or she may apply for and be allowed benefits. The claimant, then, is placed in the same position he or she would have been if originally released under conditions other than dishonorable.
(d) Service. A special act of Congress, reciting that a person is considered to have been mustered into the service on a named date and honorably discharged on a subsequently named date, is sufficient regardless of whether the service department has any record of such service.
(e) Hospitalization. Pension payable under special acts is subject to reduction pursuant to § 3.551.
(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501(a), 5503)
[26 FR 1605, Feb. 24, 1961, as amended at 39 FR 34532, Sept. 26, 1974; 68 FR 34543, June 10, 2003]
Title 38 published on 2012-07-01
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