War Claims Program Open
*The filing period for the Guam War Claims Program has completed. War Claims applications are being reviewed by the Foreign Claims Settlement Commission.
YOU FILED A WAR CLAIMS APPLICATION. WHAT’S NEXT…?
The Guam World War II Loyalty Recognition Act Claims Program filing period officially ended on June 20, 2018. All applications submitted to the Office of Congresswoman Bordallo by June 20, 2018 were forwarded to the Foreign Claims Settlement Commission (the Commission) in Washington, D.C. The Commission is now in the review process.
Upon receipt of a notarized application, the Commission will send the claimants an Acknowledgment Letter within 2-3 weeks. The letter will include a claim number assigned to your application. It is important that claimants retain the acknowledgement letter and claim number for their records.
As the Commission reviews individual Statements of Claim and any attachments, a member of the Commission’s legal staff will contact you if further information or evidence is needed. Public Law 114-328 requires the Commission to prioritize review of claims submitted by living victims of the occupation.
At this time, there is no definitive timeline for the review of Statements of Claim. Future updates will be provided by the Commission. The Office of Congresswoman Bordallo will disseminated information received from the Commission as it becomes available.
In the meantime, if you need any further information or other assistance, please contact the Commission by telephone at 202-616-6975 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Commission is open Monday to Friday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM Eastern Time.
You can also contact the Office of Congresswoman Bordallo in Washington, D.C. at 202-225-1188 or her District Office in Guam at 671-477-4272 or via e-mail at email@example.com.
About the Guam War Claims Program
On June 20, 2017, the Foreign Claims Settlement Commission officially opened the Guam War Claims Program. This program carries out federal law, Guam World War II Loyalty Recognition Act, introduced by Congresswoman Madeleine Bordallo and enacted by President Barack Obama on December 23, 2016. This law recognizes the people of Guam for their unwavering loyalty to the United States during enemy occupation during World War II, and implements many of the recommendations of the Guam War Claims Review Commission. Passage of war claims legislation was an effort undertaken by every Guam Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives and it marked a significant legislative milestone to honor those Chamorros on Guam who suffered and died during World War II.
What is the Guam World War II Loyalty Recognition Act?
The Guam World War II Loyalty Recognition Act honors Guam’s greatest generation by providing Congressional recognition to the people of Guam who endured enemy occupation during World War II. The law authorizes the payment of certain claims to the living survivors and the heirs of those who died as a result of the occupation.
Who is handling the claims process?
The Foreign Claims Settlement Commission (FCSC), an entity within the U.S. Department of Justice, is responsible for the establishing and managing the claims process for eligible individuals. The FCSC has managed 43 previous claims programs administered by the United States Government, and its staff has expertise in adjudicating such programs. The FCSC is the only entity that will adjudicate claims.
Congresswoman Bordallo and her staff are working closely with the FCSC to ensure that the claims process is managed appropriately. The Congresswoman’s office will not directly adjudicate any claims nor will the Government of Guam or any other organization. Congresswoman Bordallo’s office can help make inquiries if there are specific questions regarding the Guam War Claims program.
Who was eligible to file a claim?
The Guam World War II Loyalty Recognition Act authorizes two categories of eligible claimants. The law reflects compromise language offered to Congresswoman Bordallo in 2009 by U.S. Senator John McCain. Congresswoman Bordallo, after consulting with local leaders and the people of Guam, included this compromise language in every introduction of the Guam World War II Loyalty Recognition Act since 2010.
- Living survivors who suffered, as a result of the attack and occupation of Guam by Imperial Japanese military forces during World War II, or incident to the liberation of Guam by United States military forces, any of the following:
- Rape or severe personal injury (such as loss of a limb, dismemberment, or paralysis)
- Forced labor or a personal injury (such as disfigurement, scarring, or burns)
- Forced march, internment, or hiding to evade internment.
- The living spouse, living children or living parents of an individual who was killed during the Japanese occupation of Guam.
When can I file a claim?
The filing period for the Guam War Claims Program has ended. Public Law 114-328 required that claims be submitted by June 20, 2018. For more information or for questions regarding your specific claims, you may contact the Foreign Claims Settlement Commission at 202-616-6975 or www.justice.gov/fcsc.
You may also contact Congresswoman Bordallo’s District Office at (671) 477-4272 or Washington, D.C. office at (202) 225-1188.
What documents were needed to file a claim?
The Foreign Claims Settlement Commission only required claimants to file a claim the Statement of Claim form, which was available in English and Chamorro. No other documentation was required by the FCSC.
How long was the claims filing period open?
The Claims Program was open for one year, from June 20, 2017 to June 20, 2018.
How much is being paid for compensation?
Payments for compensation are based on what the claimant may have endured:
- $15,000- Rape or severe personal injury (loss of limb, dismemberment or paralysis)
- $12,000- Forced labor or a personal injury (disfigurement, scarring, burns)
- $10,000- Forced march, internment, or hiding to evade internment
- $25,000- to be distributed between living descendants of individuals killed during the occupation (parents, widow or surviving children only). Note: by law, these amounts will only be paid after survivors have been compensated.