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German States in U.S. Zone Accept Draft of Restitution Law; Set $7,500 Claim Limit

The Parliamentary Council of South German States today unanimously accepted a draft restitution bill presented by Dr. Philip Amerbach, Bavarian Commissioner for Persecutees. The Council, which is meeting here now, represents the German states of Bavaria, Hesse and Wuerttemberg-Badan–all in the American zone.

The measure, which goes into effect January 1, 1949, provides for the payment of compensation for damages suffered as a result of persecution as well as for arrest or imprisonment in a concentration camp or a ghetto. The law provides for payment of 50 percent of the claims from cash immediately at hand in the various states, but sets a top limit of 3,000 marks ($300) on any immediate cash payment. The bill also limits total payment for damages to 75,000 marks ($7,500) to any one individual.

Damages suffered outside the territory of Germany as it was constituted on Dec. 31, 1939 will not be compensated under this measure. In order to cover all coats of the legislation, the draft proposes that the states sell bonds and promissory notes with a fixed rate of interest.

Up to the present some 90,000 persons in the American zone have registered claims for compensation. It is believed that, together with their heirs, they total some 200,000 persons who will have to be considered in administration of the law. It is estimated that a total of from 1,200,000,000 and 1,300,000,000 marks will be required to settle all claims.

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