III. PUBLIC-Numbers 206.
AN ACT supplementary to an act entitled "An act to grant pensions," approved July fourteen, eighteen hundred and sixty- two.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the biennial examinations of pensioners required by and act approved March three, eighteen hundred and fifty-nine, may be made by one surgeon only, provided he is a surgeon of the Army or Navy, or an examining surgeon duly appointed by the Commissioner of Pensions; nor shall the biennial certificate of two unappointed civil surgeons by accepted in any case, except upon satisfactory evidence that an examination by a commissioned or duly appointed surgeon is impracticable.
SEC. 2. And be if further enacted, That all fees paid to examining surgeons for biennial examinations, or for examinations especially ordered, as provided by the eight section of the act to grant pensions, approved July fourteenth, eighteen hundred and sixty-two, shall be refunded by the agent for paying pensions in the district within which the pensioner or claimant resides, out of any money appropriated for the payment of pensions, under such regulations as the Commissioner of Pensions may prescribe.
SEC. 3. And be it further enacted, That declarations of pension claimants shall be made before a court of record, or before some officer thereof having custody of its seal, said officer being hereby fully authorized and empowered to administer and certify any oath or affirmation relating to any pension or application therefor: Provided, That the Commissioner of Pensions may designate, in localities more than twenty-five miles distant from any place at which such a court is holden, persons duly qualified to administer oaths, before whom declarations may be made and testimony taken.
SEC. 4. And be it further enacted, That section twelve of the act to grant pensions, approved July fourteen, eighteen hundred and sixty-two, is hereby repealed. And the Commissioner of Pensions is authorized and empowered to detail, from time to time, clerks in his office to investigate suspected attempts at fraud on the Government through the Pension Office, and to aid in prosecuting any persons so offending, with such additional compensation as is customary in cases of special service.
SEC. 5. And be it further enacted, That all persons now by law entitled to a less pension than hereafter specified, who shall have lost both feet in the military service of the United States and in the line of duty, shall be entitled to a pension of twenty dollars per month; and those who, under the same conditions, have lost both hands or both eyes, shall be entitled to a pension of twenty-five dollars per month.
SEC. 6. And be it further enacted, That no pension claim now on file, unless prosecuted to a successful issue within three years from the passage of this act, and no claim hereafter filed, not thus prosectured to a successful issue within five years from the date of such filing, shall be admitted without satisfactory record evidence from the War Department to establish the same; and in every case in which a claim for pension shall have been filed for more than three years after the discharge or decease of the party on whose account the claim is made, the pension, if allowed, shall commence from the date of filing the last paper in said case by the party prosecuting the same.
SEC. 7. And be if further enacted, That on the remarriage of any widow receiving a pension, such pension shall terminate, and shall not be renewed should she again become a widow.
SEC. 8. And be it further enacted, That examining surgeons, duly appointed by the Commissioner of Pensions, may be required by him, from time to time, as he shall deem for the interests of the Government, to make special examinations of pensioners on the rolls of their respective districts, and such examinations shall have precedence over previous examinations, whether special or biennial; but when injustice is alleged to have been done by any examination so ordered, the Commissioner or Pensions may, at his discretion, select a board of three duly appointed examining surgeons, who shall meet at a place to be designated by him, and shall review such cases as may be ordered before them on appeal from any special examination as aforesaid, and the decision of such board shall be final on the question so submitted thereto. The compensation of all such surgeons shall not exceed that which has been customarily allowed in such cases, and shall be paid out of any appropriations made for the payment or pensions, in the same manner as the ordinary fees of appointed surgeons are or may be authorized to be paid.
SEC. 9. And be if fns, not enlisted soldiers in the Army, who volunteered for the time being to serve with any regularly organized