Office of the Staff Judge Advocate
521 Fraim Street
Fort Detrick, Maryland 21702
The Office of the Staff Judge Advocate (OSJA) operates the Fort Detrick Claims Office. Army Regulation 27-20 controls the claims program for the US Army. The Claims Office is a claims processing office for the Fort Meade Area Claims Office. As such it has limited jurisdiction. Claims filed by Army personnel are processed at the Fort Detrick Claims Office. Fort Detrick is also home to units belonging to other branches of the uniformed service. When claims filed on Fort Detrick must be processed by another military branch, the claims are forwarded to a claims office for that service for further processing.
Types of Claims
Typically, claims fall into four major categories: personal property loss, torts, affirmative claims, and real estate reimbursement claims.
- Personal property loss may be claimed due to damages received when household goods were shipped pursuant to military orders. Chapter 11 of AR 27-20 covers a wide range of topics. Some other examples of claims include thefts in government assigned quarters, vandalism of vehicles in post housing, uniform damage caused during the performance of military duties. All of these claims will be assessed to determine whether the claims are substantiated by the evidence. The claimant's conduct will be evaluated to determine if their negligence contributed to the loss.
Claimants must file their completed DD Form 1840/1840R with the claims office within 70 days of the date the property was delivered to their home. Claims filed after that date will not qualify for payment by the Army, unless there are exceptional circumstances beyond the control of the claimant to excuse the delay.
- Individuals may claim that Army (or NAFI) employees inflicted damages during the scope of their Army (or NAFI) employment. These claims are filed under the Federal Torts Claims Act. Investigations into tort claims will evaluate whether the claimant's conduct contributed to the incident. They will also assess whether the Army employee was within the scope of their employment at the time of the loss (e.g. Army employee in a military convoy was "in scope" when the Army truck hit a privately owned vehicle on the highway; but an Army employee on a lunch break who hit a privately owned vehicle on the way to lunch was not "in scope"). Military members do not have the same right to sue the Army for torts as do others.
- Affirmative Claims may be asserted by the Army to recover damages inflicted by third parties. This is most frequently seen on Fort Detrick when privately owned vehicles hit Army property. The Fort Meade Area Claims Office also pursues affirmative claims to recover medical expenses and lost unit wages that are caused when military members/families receive medical treatment due to the conduct of third parties.
- The Joint Travel Regulation permits the Army to reimburse military civilian employees who incur a permanent change of duty station due to military employment. Employees who unilaterally pursue new duty positions may not be authorized these expenses because the move for the convenience of the employee and not the convenience of the government. These claims are actually processed by the civilian personnel office and the claims office merely evaluates the claim to determine if the sum sought is commensurate with local charges. The claim is also reviewed to determine whether the JTR and the decisions of the Comptroller General authorize the payments in question.
Procedures for Processing Household Goods Claims
Download Procedures for Processing Household Goods Claims.
Typically, claims fall into four major categories: personal property loss, torts, affirmative claims, and real estate reimbursement claims. A separate full replacement value claims process operates through the Surface Deployment and Distribution Command (SDDC) who runs the contracts with the companies who move household goods for the military. Do not confuse the depreciated value claims process filed through the military claims office and the separate full replacement value claims filed through the transportation service provider (moving company). ...[more]
- DD Form 1842
- DD Form 1843
- DD Form 1844
The DD Form 1842, DD Form 1843 and DD Form 1844 are available at http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/forms/dd/ddforms1500-1999.htm.