Other Fields
Agency Scheme: 
Hearing Level: Basic Structure
Name of Hearing Office (local name): 
Office of Chief Counsel
Name of Hearing Office (global name): 
Department of Transportation: Office of Chief Counsel
Hearing Officer #1 (Title): 
Presiding Official
Hearing Officer #2 (Title): 
Chief Counsel
Are administrative appeals permitted from final decisions at the hearing-level stage?: 
Yes (All Types of Cases)
Comments/Notes on Adjudication Structure: 

-The "Presiding Official" (PO) named as Hearing Officer #1 is a factfinder that the Chief Counsel may appoint after a preliminary investigation when he desires further review of certain issues before he reaches a decision. See 49 CFR 604.34. The Chief Counsel enters an order specifying the matters to be decided by the PO, see id., and the PO ultimately issues a recommended decision that the Chief Counsel either adopts or modifies. See 49 CFR 604.46. As part of his decision, the Chief Counsel also determines the penalty (if any) to be applied. See 49 CFR 604.47.
-Subpart J of 49 CFR Part 604 recognizes the Administrator (i.e., the Federal Transit Administration's head) as the appellate officer.

PROCESS & PROCEDURE - General Information
Are private parties permitted to have representation at hearings?: 
Yes (All Types of Cases)
Who may serve as a private party representative?: 
Is the agency permitted to have representation at hearings?: 
Regulations/rules of practice for hearings (please include CFR citations): 
49 CFR 604.25 - 604.47
PROCESS & PROCEDURE - Pre-Hearing Procedure
Briefly describe the scope and type(s) of discovery available (e.g., depositions, interrogatories, etc.): 
-49 CFR 604.38(a): "Permissible forms of discovery shall be within the discretion of the PO." -49 CFR 604.39(a): "For good cause shown, the PO may order that the testimony of a witness may be taken by deposition and that the witness produce documentary evidence in connection with such testimony."
Does the hearing officer have subpoena authority?: 
Are parties provided notice of hearing?: 
Yes (All Types of Cases)
PROCESS & PROCEDURE - Hearing Procedure
What types of hearings are permitted at the hearing-level stage?: 
Please provide the approximate percentage of each type of hearing relative to the total number of hearings (FY2013)
How is the type of hearing selected: 
Required by Rule
How many hearing officers preside at each hearing?: 
Is witness testimony permitted at hearings?: 
Are hearings recorded and/or transcribed?: 
Are hearings open to the public?: 
Presumed Open (But May Be Closed Under Certain Conditions)
PROCESS & PROCEDURE - Post-Hearing Procedure
Who typically drafts the decision at the hearing-level stage?: 
Adjudication Officer
If "Other," please specify (drafts): 
NB: The PO (Hearing Officer #1) merely issues a recommended decision. See 49 CFR 604.46.
Who has authority to issue final decisions?: 
Adjudication Officer
If "Other," please specify: 
NB: The Chief Counsel (Hearing Officer #2) issues a final decision either adopting or modifying the PO's decision. See 49 CFR 604.46.
Do agency regulations or guidance provide time limits for issuance of final decisions?: 
Yes (All Types of Cases)
If "Yes," please specify these time limit(s): 
-49 CFR 604.46: "(a) The PO shall issue a recommended decision based on the record developed during the proceeding and shall send the recommended decision to the Chief Counsel for ratification or modification not later than 110 days after the referral from the Chief Counsel. (b) The Chief Counsel shall ratify or modify the PO's recommended decision within 30 days of receiving the recommended decision."
Is judicial review available after issuance of a final decision?: 
PROCESS & PROCEDURE - Case Management
Does the agency permit web-based electronic filing of hearing-related briefs or other documents?: 
Are final decisions published and/or posted on the agency website?: 
Yes (Some Decisions)
If "Yes (Some Decisions)," how does the agency determine which final decisions to publish/post? Please briefly describe: 
-Unknown. See comments below.
Do agency regulations/rules of practice specify the contents of the administrative record at the hearing-level stage?: 
Yes (All Types of Cases)
If "Yes," please provide citation(s): 
-49 CFR 604.44(a): "The transcript of all testimony in the hearing, all exhibits received into evidence, all motions, applications requests and rulings, and all documents included in the hearing record shall constitute the exclusive record for decision in the proceedings and the basis for the issuance of any orders."
Do agency regulations/rules of practice provide for closure of the record at the hearing-level stage (subject to applicable exce: 
Comments/Notes on Hearing-Level Process & Procedures (Optional): 
-Regarding private party representation, the regulations state that any party "may be accompanied, represented, or advised by an attorney . . . or by another duly authorized representative." 49 CFR 604.37(a). -Most proceedings within this scheme resolve conflicts between outside entities over which the FTA presides. See 49 CFR 604.26 and 604.27 (complaints to be filed by "recipient[s]" or "registered charter providers"). Thus, the agency does generally not participate as a party and is not represented by anyone other than the PO. See 49 CFR 604.37(b). In some cases, however, the agency may initiate an investigation on its own (i.e, without first receiving a complaint) and refer the matter to a PO if the agency fails to secure an informal resolution. See 49 CFR 604.33. -Although the PO does not have explicit subpoena power, the PO may regulate the course of hearings (see 49 CFR 604.36(g)) and may issue notices of deposition (see 49 CFR 604.39). -Regulations permit the electronic filing of the initial complaint (see 49 CFR 604.30). -The agency maintains a "Charter Dockets" page that provides links to certain Chief Counsel decisions from these proceedings. See http://www.fta.dot.gov/legislation_law/12922_8392.html.
Comments/Notes on Hearing-Level Adjudicators (Optional): 
-The "Presiding Official" may be appointed by the Chief Counsel in proceedings (See 49 CFR 604.34, 604.36). The regulations provide no detail as to this official's job qualifications or status.
ADR: General Information
Is ADR available at one or more points during the hearing process?: 
If "Yes," when is ADR available?: 
Before Claim/Case Filed
Is ADR a mandatory or voluntary process?: 
What type(s) of ADR are available?: 
Settlement Conference
Who conducts the ADR?: 
Agency Counsel
Regulations/rules of practice governing ADR process (please include CFR citations): 
49 CFR 604.33(b), 604.36(h)
Comments/Notes on ADR Process (Optional): 
-ADR guidance pertaining to this scheme is found in two regulatory sections. The first, 49 CFR 604.33(b), states that the agency will "invite good faith efforts to resolve the matter" in cases where it initiates an investigation on its own. The second, describing the powers of a PO, states that such officials may (inter alia) "[h]old conferences to settle or to simplify the issues by consent of the parties." 49 CFR 604.36(h).
Verified by Agency: 
Not verified