involves a dispute over the terms of a contract or over
ownership of property is not normally payable unless
the dispute is merely a cover for an intent to steal.
Article 139 is not a way in which an individual can have
his or her debts collected, nor is it to be used to mediate
A claim that a marine borrowed a friends VCR to
tape a show and did not return it on the promised date
would not be cognizable unless the marine borrowed the
VCR on such a pretext and then sold it. This would
prove a present intent to steal.
A claim that a sailor issued a worthless check would
be cognizable if evidence establishes an intent to
defraud. Such intent may be inferred when the sailor
fails to make good on a bad check within 5 working days
of receiving notice of insufficient funds, in the same way
that a criminal intent to defraud maybe inferred under
Article 123a, UCMJ,
A claim that a sai
used it to obtain items
lor stole a check or credit card and
of value would be cognizable.
EXCLUSIONS FROM LIABILlTY
The following types of claims are not payable under
. Claims resulting from conduct that involves only
simple negligence (failure to act with the same care that
a reasonable person would use under the circumstances)
l Subrogated claims (by insurers)
. Claims payable under other claims statutes or
. Claims for personal injury or death
. Claims arising from conduct occurring within the
scope of employment
l Claims for reimbursement for damage, loss, or
destruction of government property
l Claims arising from contractual or fiduciary
l Claims for indirect or consequential damages
(such as lost business, lost earnings, carrying charges,
interest, attorney fees, inconvenience, telephone calls,
or time spent preparing the claim)
Any individual (including both civilians and service
members), business entity, state or local government, or
charity may submit a claim.
MEASURE OF DAMAGES
The amount of recovery is limited to only the direct
physical damage caused by the service member.
Service members are not assessed for damage or
property loss due to the acts or omissions of the property
owner, his or her lessee or agent, that were a proximate
contributing factor to the loss or damage of said
property. In these cases, the standard for determining
responsibility will be one of comparative responsibility.
The maximum amount that maybe approved by an
OEGCMJ under Article 139 is $5,000 per offender, per
incident. Where there is a valid claim for over $5,000,
the claim, investigation into the claim, and the COs
recommendation are sent to JAG (Code 35) or to
Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps (Code JAR), as
appropriate, before checkage against the offender can
The amount that can be charged against an
offender in any single month cannot exceed one-half of
the members basic pay.
STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS
The claim must he submitted within 90 days of the
incident upon which the claim is based.
Article 139 claims involve certain unique
procedures. The claimant may make an oral claim, but
it must be reduced to a personally signed writing that
sets forth the specific amount of the claim, the facts and
circumstances surrounding the claim, and any other
matters that will assist in the investigation. If there is
more than one claimant from a single incident, each
claimant must submit a separate and individual claim.
Claims cognizable under Article 139 may be
investigated by an investigation not requiring a hearing.
There is no requirement that the alleged offender be
designated as a-party to the investigation and afforded
the rights of a party. The investigation inquires into the
circumstances surrounding the claim, gathering all
relevant information about the claim.