5 U.S.C.
United States Code, 2011 Edition
Title 5 - GOVERNMENT ORGANIZATION AND EMPLOYEES
PART I - THE AGENCIES GENERALLY
CHAPTER 3 - POWERS
Sec. 304 - Subpenas
From the U.S. Government Printing Office, www.gpo.gov

§304. Subpenas

(a) The head of an Executive department or military department or bureau thereof in which a claim against the United States is pending may apply to a judge or clerk of a court of the United States to issue a subpena for a witness within the jurisdiction of the court to appear at a time and place stated in the subpena before an individual authorized to take depositions to be used in the courts of the United States, to give full and true answers to such written interrogatories and cross-interrogatories as may be submitted with the application, or to be orally examined and cross-examined on the subject of the claim.

(b) If a witness, after being served with a subpena, neglects or refuses to appear, or, appearing, refuses to testify, the judge of the district in which the subpena issued may proceed, on proper process, to enforce obedience to the subpena, or to punish for disobedience, in the same manner as a court of the United States may in case of process of subpena ad testificandum issued by the court.

(Pub. L. 89–554, Sept. 6, 1966, 80 Stat. 379.)

Historical and Revision Notes
DerivationU.S. CodeRevised Statutes and

Statutes at Large

(a) 5 U.S.C. 94. R.S. §184.
(b) 5 U.S.C. 96. R.S. §186.

In subsection (a), the words “Executive department” are substituted for “department” as the definition of “department” applicable to this section is coextensive with the definition of “Executive department” in section 101. The word “thereof” is added to reflect the proper relationship between “department” and “bureau” as reflected in title IV of the Revised Statutes of 1878. The words “in any State, District, or Territory” are omitted as unnecessary. The word “individual” is substituted for “officer” as the definition of “officer” in section 2104 is narrower than the word “officer” in R.S. §184 which word includes “officers” as defined in section 2104 as well as notaries public who are not “officers” under section 2104, but are “officers” as that word is used in R.S. §184.

In subsection (a), the words “or military department” are inserted to preserve the application of the source law. Before enactment of the National Security Act Amendments of 1949 (63 Stat. 578), the Department of the Army, the Department of the Navy, and the Department of the Air Force were Executive departments. The National Security Act Amendments of 1949 established the Department of Defense as an Executive Department including the Department of the Army, the Department of the Navy, and the Department of the Air Force as military departments, not as Executive departments. However, the source law for this section, which was in effect in 1949, remained applicable to the Secretaries of the military departments by virtue of section 12(g) of the National Security Act Amendments of 1949 (63 Stat. 591), which is set out in the reviser's note for section 301.

This section was part of title IV of the Revised Statutes. The Act of July 26, 1947, ch. 343, §201(d), as added Aug. 10, 1949, ch. 412, §4, 63 Stat. 579 (former 5 U.S.C. 171–1), which provides “Except to the extent inconsistent with the provisions of this Act [National Security Act of 1947], the provisions of title IV of the Revised Statutes as now or hereafter amended shall be applicable to the Department of Defense” is omitted from this title but is not repealed.

Standard changes are made to conform with the definitions applicable and the style of this title as outlined in the preface to the report.