Clinton v. Goldsmith, 526 U.S. 529, 11 (1999)

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Cite as: 526 U. S. 529 (1999)

Opinion of the Court

Respondent may also have recourse to the federal trial courts. We have previously held, for example, that "[BCMR] decisions are subject to judicial review [by federal courts] and can be set aside if they are arbitrary, capricious, or not based on substantial evidence." Chappell v. Wallace, 462 U. S. 296, 303 (1983). A servicemember claiming something other than monetary relief may challenge a BCMR's decision to sustain a decision to drop him from the rolls (or otherwise dismissing him) as final agency action under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5 U. S. C. 551 et seq.; see 704, 706. For examples of such challenges entertained in the district courts or courts of appeals, see Roelofs v. Secretary of Air Force, 628 F. 2d 594, 599-601 (CADC 1980) (proceeding in District Court under APA raising due process challenge to administrative discharge based on conviction of civilian offense); Walker v. Shannon, 848 F. Supp. 250, 251, 254-255 (DC 1994) (suit under APA for review of Army BCMR decision upholding involuntary separation). In the instances in which a claim for monetary relief may be framed, a servicemember may enter the Court of Federal Claims with a challenge to dropping from the rolls (or other discharge) under the Tucker Act, 28 U. S. C. 1491.13 See,

e. g., Doe v. United States, 132 F. 3d 1430, 1433-1434 (CA Fed. 1997) (suit for backpay and correction of military records following administrative discharge); Mitchell v. United States, 930 F. 2d 893, 896-897 (CA Fed. 1991) (suit for back-no way alter the fact that BCMR's are legislatively authorized to provide the relief sought by respondent.

In any event, it is clear as noted in the text that follows that respond-ent's constitutional objections could have been addressed by the federal courts.

13 Under the Tucker Act, the Court of Federal Claims has exclusive jurisdiction over nontort claims against the Government for greater than $10,000. See 28 U. S. C. 1491. Determinations of the Court of Federal Claims may be appealed to the Federal Circuit.


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