The Compacts of Free Association are a series of treaties between the United States, the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), the Republic of Palau, and the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI). These treaties were partially established as compensation for the loss of life, health, land, and resources due to the numerous nuclear weapons tests on the Marshall Islands and Bikini and Enewetak Atolls issued by the U.S. from 1946 to 1958. The Compacts allow citizens of Micronesia to live and legally work in the U.S. without a visa, as well as have access to social and health services. In return, the U.S. has sole access and substantial amount of military and veto power over these islands that are are considered of strategic value.
The Office of Insular Affairs of the U.S. Department of the Interior administers and oversees U.S. federal assistance provided to the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau under the Compacts of Free Association.