32 CFR 537.12 - Settlement authority.
(a) Assertions for $50,000 or less -
(1) Approval authority. An RJA or civilian recovery attorney, if delegated authority by his or her ACO or CPO, may compromise a collection on a claim asserted for $50,000 or less, unless recovery action is reserved by a command claims service.
(2) Final action authority.
(i) An ACO, or CPO if delegated authority by its ACO, may terminate collection action on a claim asserted for $50,000 or less, unless action is reserved by a command claims service.
(ii) The foregoing authorities may waive a claim asserted for $50,000 or less where undue hardship exists.
(iii) Determination of amount. The amount of $50,000 is determined totaling the amounts for medical care, lost military wages, lost earnings or government property damage arising from the same claims incident.
(b) Assertions over $50,000. USARCS retains final authority over assertions over $50,000. By use of the mirror file system and through a dialogue between USARCS and the field during the course of the assertion, USARCS will decide whether it or the RJA or civilian recovery attorney will conduct the negotiations. To help it decide, the RJA or civilian recovery attorney will forward a memorandum for either medical or property recovery approval, in the format of the samples posted at the USARCS Web site (for the address see the Note to § 537.1). USARCS may waive the requirement to submit a memorandum.
(c) Appeals -
(1) Assertion for $50,000 or less. Where the assertion is made by an RJA or civilian recovery attorney, the appeal will be determined by the SJA, the medical center judge advocate, or head of the ACO or CPO. Otherwise, the appeal will be determined by the Commander USARCS.
(2) Assertion over $50,000. Where the assertion is made by a Claims Judge Advocate or claims attorney, the appeal will be determined by the Commander USARCS.
(d) Compromise or waiver. Any assertion may be compromised, waived or terminated in whole or in part, if for example:
(1) The cost to collect does not justify the cost of enforcement.
(2) There is evidence of fraud or misrepresentation.
(3) The U.S. cannot locate the tortfeasor.
(4) Legal merit has not been substantiated.
(5) The statute of limitations has run and the debtor refuses to pay.
(6) Collection of all or part of the amount of funds demanded would create inequity. The following criteria apply:
(i) Detailed information on what funds are available for recovery.
(ii) Reasonable value of the injured party's claim for permanent injury, pain and suffering, decreased earning power, and any other special damages.
(iii) Military, Department of Veterans Affairs, Social Security disability, and any other government benefits accruing to the injured party.
(iv) Probability and amount of future medical expenses of the government and the injured party.
(v) Present and prospective assets, income, and obligations of the injured party and those dependent on him or her.
(vi) The financial condition of the debtor.
(vii) The degree and nature of contributory negligence on the part of the injured party in causing his injury or death.
(viii) The percentage of attorney's fees that his attorney is willing to reduce.
(ix) The willingness of the tortfeasor to enter into an installment agreement.
(e) Releases. The RJA or recovery attorney may execute a release for affirmative claims in the pre-litigation stage acknowledging that the government has received payment in full of the amount asserted or the compromised amount agreed upon, or the final installment payment. The format of the release should be similar to the sample posted at the USARCS Web site (for the address see the Note to § 537.1). However, the RJA or recovery attorney may not execute either an indemnity agreement or a release which prejudices the government's right to recover on other claims arising out of the same incident without the approval of USARCS. In addition, the RJA or recovery attorney may not execute a release that purports to release any claim that the injured party may have other than for medical care furnished or to be furnished by the United States. The RJA or recovery attorney will not execute a release if the government's claim is waived or terminated.