Media Contact: Tozier - Interior 4306
For Immediate Release: October 20, 1962

The Department of the Interior today announced the adoption of regulations governing distribution of a judgment fund awarded to the Cherokee Indians of Oklahoma by the Indian Claims Commission.

Under legislation recently passed by Congress the persons eligible to share in the funds are those whose names appear on the final Cherokee roll of March 4, 1907, and their heirs or legatees as determined under the laws of succession and testacy of the State of residence of the decedent on the date of his death. No names will be added to the roll.

All claims to share in the fund are to be filed with the Area Director, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Federal Bldg., Muskogee, Oklahoma, and must be received on or before October 9, 1965---three years from the date of the Act.

The amount originally awarded to the Cherokees by the Indian Claims Commission was $14,789,476.15. This, however, has already been reduced to $11,878,444,37 by setting aside funds to cover the payment of attorney’s fees and offsets to compensate the United States for program expenses. It will be brought down further by setting aside sufficient funds for payments to cover the attorneys' expenses and meet the costs of making the distribution.

Under the statute the Bureau of Indian Affairs will not distribute proportional shares of deceased heirs or legatees unless the shares are worth at least $10 or more nor pay an inherited share unless it amounts to $5 or more.

The regulations will be published in full shortly in the Federal Register.