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Chattler v. U.S., 10-1066

By FindLaw Staff on January 10, 2011 | Last updated on March 21, 2019
Plaintiff's Tucker Act claim against the government for breach of contract

Chattler v. U.S., 10-1066, concerned a plaintiff's action against the United States and Department of State asserting a Little Tucker Act claim under 28 U.S.C. section 1346(a)(2) for breach of contract, claiming provision 5(b) of the passport application was an offer, which she accepted by paying the $60 expedite fee, and that the government breached the resulting contract by failing to process her passport within three days.

In affirming the judgment of the district court, the court held that the district court properly granted government's summary judgment on plaintiff's regulatory claim as the phrase, "will be refunded" in section 51.63(c) of the Code of Federal Regulations Title 23 does not imply "will be refunded without further action by the applicant," and does not require the government to issue an automatic refund without a request by the applicant.  The court also held that the government did not manifest an intent to be bound in contract by provision 5(b) of the passport application, and no contract was formed by the timing provision in the passport application or by the statements on the Department's website.

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