CHAP. 245.-An Act To pension soldiers and sailors of the War with Spain, the Philippine insurrection, and the China relief expedition.
|Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That all persons who served ninety days or more in the military or naval service of the United States during the War with Spain, the Philippine insurrection, and the China relief expedition, and who have been honorably discharged therefrom, and who are now or who may hereafter be suffering from any mental or physical disability or disabilities of a permanent character, not the result of their own vicious habits, which so incapacitates them from the performance of manual labor as to render them unable to earn a support, shall, upon making due proof of the fact, according to such rules and regulations as the Secretary of the Interior may provide, be placed upon the list of invalid pensioners of the United States, and be entitled to receive a pension not exceeding $30 per month and not less than $12 per month, proportioned to the degree of inability to earn a support; and in determining such inability each and every infirmity shall be duly considered, and the aggregate of the disabilities shown be rated, and such pension shall commence from the date of the filing of the application in the Bureau of Pensions, after the passage of this Act, upon proof that the disability or disabilities then existed, and shall continue during the existence of the same: Provided, That any such person who has reached the age of 62 years shall, upon making proof of such fact, be placed upon the pension roll and entitled to receive a pension of $12 per month. In case such person has reached the age of 68 years, $18 per month; in case such person has reached the age of 72 years, $24 per month; and in case such person has reached the age of 75 years, $30 per month: Provided further, That persons who are now receiving pensions under existing laws, or whose claims are pending in the Bureau of Pensions, may, by application to the Commissioner of Pensions, in such form as he may prescribe, showing themselves entitled thereto, receive the benefits of this Act; and nothing herein contained shall be so construed as to prevent any pensioner thereunder from prosecuting his claim and receiving his pension under any other general or special Act: Provided, however, That no person shall receive more than one pension for the same period: And provided further, That rank in the service shall not be considered in applications filed under this Act.
SEC. 2. That no agent, attorney, or other person engaged in preparing, presenting, or prosecuting any claim under the provisions of this Act, shall, directly or indirectly, contract for, demand, receive, or retain for such services in preparing, presenting, or prosecuting such claim a sum greater than $20, which sum shall be payable only upon the order of the Commissioner of Pensions under such rules and regulations as he may deem proper to make, and any person who shall violate any of the provisions of this section, or who shall wrongfully withhold from a pensioner or claimant the whole or any part of a pension or claim allowed or due such pensioner or claimant under this Act, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof shall, for each and every such offense, be fined not exceeding $500, or be imprisoned at hard labor not exceeding two years, or both, in the discretion of the court.
SEC. 3. That from and after the approval of this Act all persons whose names are on the pension roll, and who, while in the service of the United States in the Army, Navy, or Marine Corps and in the line of duty, shall have lost one hand or one foot or been totally disabled in the same, shall receive a pension at the rate of $60 per month; that all persons who, in such service and in like manner, shall have lost an arm at or above the elbow, or a leg at or above the knee, or been totally disabled in the same, shall receive a pension at the rate of $65 per month; that all persons who, in such service and in like manner, shall have lost an arm at the shoulder joint or a leg at the hip joint, or so near the shoulder or hip joint, or where the same is in such condition as to prevent the use of an artificial limb, shall receive a pension at the rate of $72 per month; and that all persons who, in such service and in like manner, shall have lost one hand and one foot, or been totally disabled in the same, shall receive a pension at the rate of $90 per month; and that all persons who, in such service and in like manner, shall have lost both eyes, or been totally disabled in the same or who, in such service and in like manner, sustained injuries that proved the direct cause of the subsequent total loss of the sight of both eyes, shall receive a pension at the rate of $100 per month.
Approved, June 5, 1920.