Statement to be issued by the Minister of Defence in pursuance of Section 9 (2) of the Act
The nature and operation of the arrangements made by the Minister of Defence under Section 9 of the Visiting Forces Act, 1952, with regard to the settlement of claims against members of a Visiting Force to which the Act applies or is made to apply, are as follow:
2. The claims to which the arrangements relate are:
3. The arrangements will apply to claims arising out of acts committed on or after the day of, 1954.
4. Claimants must address their claims as follows:
( a) Maritime claims should be addressed to:
The Secretary of the Admiralty, Naval Law Branch, Queen Anne's Mansions, London, S.W.I.
( b) Claims arising out of accidents involving aircraft owned or controlled by a Visiting Force should be addressed to:
The Under Secretary of State, Air Ministry F7 (d), Metropole Buildings, Northumberland Avenue, London, W.C.2.
( c) All other claims arising out of tortious acts of any member of a Visiting Force or its civilian component should be addressed to:
The Secretary, Claims Commission, War Office, Nuffield House, Piccadilly, London, W.I.
5. If the alleged tortious act complained of was committed during the performance of an official duty, the claim will be dealt with in the same manner as it would have been jf such tortious act had been committed by a member of the British Armed Forces. If a settlement of the claim is reached by negotiation any sum due under that settlement will be paid. If, however, a settlement of the claim cannot be reached by negotiation it is open to the claimant to bring proceedings in the British Courts in respect of his claim against the individual wrongdoer concerned and any sum due under any judgment of the Court obtained by the claimant will be paid to him (provided notice of the intention to start proceedings against the wrongdoer has been given to authorities referred to in paragraph 4) except that in the case of maritime claims there will be paid only so much of the amount of the judgment as the Crown would be liable to pay if it were able to limit its liability under the Merchant Shipping Acts, 1894 to 1940 as applied by Section 5 of the Crown Proceedings Act, 1947.
6. If on investigation of a claim it is ascertained that the act complained of was not committed during the performance of an official duty, no responsibility for settlement will be accepted by the Minister of Defence. The claim will, however, be investigated by the appropriate United Kingdom authority and a report prepared and submitted to the appropriate authority of the Visiting Force concerned so that the latter may consider whether or not an ex gratia payment might be made to the claimant direct by the particular Force concerned. A claimant, if he so desires, may institute proceedings against the individual
concerned in respect of any act outside the scope of an official duty, but responsibility for satisfying a judgment obtained in these circumstances will not be accepted by the Minister of Defence.
7. If a dispute arises whether a tortious act of a member of a Visiting Force or civilian component was done in the performance of official duty the question may be submitted to a legal Arbitrator whose decision will be binding and conclusive upon all the parties concerned. The same course will be followed where a claimant is unable to identify the wrongdoer.