48 U.S. Code § 1424c. Review of claims respecting land on Guam

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(a) Jurisdiction

Notwithstanding any law or court decision to the contrary, the District Court of Guam is hereby granted authority and jurisdiction to review claims of persons, their heirs or legatees, from whom interests in land on Guam were acquired other than through judicial condemnation proceedings, in which the issue of compensation was adjudicated in a contested trial in the District Court of Guam, by the United States between July 21, 1944, and August 23, 1963, and to award fair compensation in those cases where it is determined that less than fair market value was paid as a result of (1) duress, unfair influence, or other unconscionable actions, or (2) unfair, unjust, and inequitable actions of the United States.

(b) Acquisitions effected through condemnation proceedings

Land acquisitions effected through judicial condemnation proceedings in which the issue of compensation was adjudicated in a contested trial in the District Court of Guam, shall remain res judicata and shall not be subject to review hereunder.

(c) Fair compensation

Fair compensation for purposes of this Act is defined as such additional amounts as are necessary to effect payment of fair market value at the time of acquisition, if it is determined that, as a result of duress, unfair influence, or other unconscionable actions, fair market value was not paid.

(d) Employment of special masters or judges

The District Court of Guam may employ and utilize the services of such special masters or judges as are necessary to carry out the intent and purposes hereof.

(e) Awards

Awards made hereunder shall be judgments against the United States.

(f) Limitation on attorney’s fees; violation; penalty

Attorney’s fees paid by claimants to counsel representing them may not exceed 5 per centum of any additional award. Any agreement to the contrary shall be unlawful and void. Whoever, in the United States or elsewhere, demands or receives any remuneration in excess of the maximum permitted by this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not more than $5,000 or imprisoned not more than twelve months, or both. A reasonable attorney’s fee may be awarded in appropriate cases.

(g) Availability of documents, records, and writings to court

All agencies and departments of the United States Government shall, upon request, deliver to the court any documents, records, and writings which are pertinent to any claim under review.

References in Text

This Act, referred to in subsec. (c), is Pub. L. 95–134, Oct. 15, 1977, 91 Stat. 1159, as amended, popularly known as the Omnibus Territories Act of 1977. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Tables.


Section was not enacted as part of the Organic Act of Guam which comprises this chapter.


1980—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 96–205 struck out provisions prohibiting allowance of interest on additional amounts of award.

Treatment of Certain Awards by District Court of Guam

Pub. L. 100–647, title VI, § 6140, Nov. 10, 1988, 102 Stat. 3724, provided that:

“For purposes of the internal revenue laws of the United States and Guam, gross income shall not include any amount received pursuant to any claim over which the District Court of Guam has jurisdiction by reason of section 204 of Public Law 95–134 [this section] (commonly referred to as the Omnibus Territories Act of 1977). This section shall be effective for taxable years beginning after December 31, 1985.”
Commencement of Civil Actions Before April 1, 1982

Pub. L. 96–205, title III, § 301(b), Mar. 12, 1980, 94 Stat. 87, provided that:

“Any civil action under section 204 of the Omnibus Territories Act of 1977 (91 Stat. 1162) [this section] shall be barred unless it is commenced not later than April 1, 1982.”