5 U.S. Code § 8132 - Adjustment after recovery from a third person

If an injury or death for which compensation is payable under this subchapter is caused under circumstances creating a legal liability in a person other than the United States to pay damages, and a beneficiary entitled to compensation from the United States for that injury or death receives money or other property in satisfaction of that liability as the result of suit or settlement by him or in his behalf, the beneficiary, after deducting therefrom the costs of suit and a reasonable attorney’s fee, shall refund to the United States the amount of compensation paid by the United States and credit any surplus on future payments of compensation payable to him for the same injury. No court, insurer, attorney, or other person shall pay or distribute to the beneficiary or his designee the proceeds of such suit or settlement without first satisfying or assuring satisfaction of the interest of the United States. The amount refunded to the United States shall be credited to the Employees’ Compensation Fund. If compensation has not been paid to the beneficiary, he shall credit the money or property on compensation payable to him by the United States for the same injury. However, the beneficiary is entitled to retain, as a minimum, at least one-fifth of the net amount of the money or other property remaining after the expenses of a suit or settlement have been deducted; and in addition to this minimum and at the time of distribution, an amount equivalent to a reasonable attorney’s fee proportionate to the refund to the United States.

Historical and Revision Notes

1966 Act


U.S. Code

Revised Statutes and

Statutes at Large

5 U.S.C. 777.

Sept. 7, 1916, ch. 458, § 27, 39 Stat. 747.

Standard changes are made to conform with the definitions applicable and the style of this title as outlined in the preface to the report.

1967 Act

Section of title 5

Source (U.S. Code)

Source (Statutes at Large)


5 App.: 777(b) (proviso).

July 4, 1966, Pub. L. 89–488, § 10(b), 80 Stat. 255.

The words “However, * * * is entitled to retain * * * plus” are substituted for “Provided, That * * * shall have the right to retain * * * and, in addition, to retain”.

Editorial Notes

1974—Pub. L. 93–416 made minor changes in phraseology and inserted provision prohibiting a court, etc., from distributing proceeds of suit or settlement without satisfying or assuring satisfaction of the interests of the United States.

Statutory Notes and Related Subsidiaries
Effective Date of 1974 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 93–416 effective Sept. 7, 1974, and applicable to any injury or death occurring on or after Sept. 7, 1974, see section 28(a) of Pub. L. 93–416, set out as a note under section 8101 of this title.

Personnel Not Affected by 1967 Increase

Increases authorized under amendment by Pub. L. 90–83 not applicable to specified personnel, see section 7 of Pub. L. 90–83, set out as a note under section 8103 of this title.

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