Other Fields
Agency Scheme: 
Hearing Level: Basic Structure
Name of Hearing Office (local name): 
National Appeals Office
Name of Hearing Office (global name): 
Department of Commerce: National Appeals Office
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Hearing Officer #1 (Title): 
Appellate Officer
Are administrative appeals permitted from final decisions at the hearing-level stage?: 
Comments/Notes on Adjudication Structure: 

This adjudication scheme provides for review of denials of permits and other limited access privileges pursuant to the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. An appellate officer within the National Appeals Office (NAO) presides over the hearing, but the final decision is made by the Regional Administrator (e.g., the administrator of one of the five regions of the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)--Northeast, Southeast, West Coast, Alaska, or Pacific Islands--as well as an official with similar authority within the Department of Commerce (DOC), such as the Director of NMFS's Office of Sustainable Fisheries).

NAO is an adjudicatory body located within the Office of Management and Budget, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce.

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?: 
Regulations/rules of practice for hearings (please include CFR citations): 
15 CFR Part 906
PROCESS & PROCEDURE - Pre-Hearing Procedure
Is discovery permitted by either party at the hearing-level stage?: 
Yes (All Types of Cases)
Briefly describe the scope and type(s) of discovery available (e.g., depositions, interrogatories, etc.): 
"Parties shall exchange all exhibits that will be offered at the hearing at least 10 days before the hearing." 15 CFR 906.9(b) However, "[p]arties may not compel discovery or the testimony of any witness." 15 CFR 906.11(a)(7)
Does the hearing officer have subpoena authority?: 
Are ex parte contacts prohibited?: 
Yes (All Types of Cases)
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?: 
Written (Document-Only) Hearing
How is the type of hearing selected: 
By Agency
How many hearing officers preside at each hearing?: 
Is witness testimony permitted at hearings?: 
Varies by Case
If "Varies by Case," please describe: 
Witness testimony is permitted in the hearing officer's discretion for in-person, video, and telephone hearings. This question is not applicable to document-only hearings.
Can parties cross-examine witnesses?: 
Varies by Case
If "Varies by Case," please describe: 
Cross-examination is permitted in the hearing officer's discretion for in-person, video, and telephone hearings. This question is not applicable to document-only hearings.
Can third-parties submit amicus briefs and/or evidence?: 
Are hearings recorded and/or transcribed?: 
Only at Party Request
Discretion of Adjudication Officer(s)
N/A (Document-Only Hearings)
PROCESS & PROCEDURE - Post-Hearing Procedure
Who typically drafts the decision at the hearing-level stage?: 
Adjudication Officer
If "Other," please specify (drafts): 
Typically the Appellate Officer drafts the opinion at the hearing level stage.
Who has authority to issue final decisions?: 
Program Official
If "Other," please specify: 
The Regional Administrator for the Region issues the final agency decision. See 15 CFR 906.17
Do agency regulations or guidance provide time limits for issuance of final decisions?: 
Is judicial review available after issuance of a final decision?: 
Yes (All Types of Cases)
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 (All Decisions)
Do agency regulations/rules of practice specify the contents of the administrative record at the hearing-level stage?: 
Do agency regulations/rules of practice provide for closure of the record at the hearing-level stage (subject to applicable exce: 
Yes (All Types of Cases)
If "Yes," please provide citation(s): 
15 CFR 906.12
Comments/Notes on Hearing-Level Process & Procedures (Optional): 
The federal rules of evidence do not apply to these proceedings. See 15 CFR 906.10(a) "If an appellate officer convenes a hearing, the hearing will be conducted in the manner determined by NAO most likely to obtain the facts relevant to the matter or matters at issue." 15 CFR 906.11(a)(2) A party may file a motion for reconsideration. See 15 CFR 906.16
Comments/Notes on Hearing-Level Adjudicators (Optional): 
The appellate officer is defined in the regulations as "an individual designated by the Chief of the National Appeals Office to adjudicate the appeal. The term may include the Chief of the National Appeals Office." 15 CFR 906.2. All posted decisions refer to the Officer as an Administrative Judge. The appellate officer may disqualify him or herself for a number of reasons, including based on the principles found in the American Bar Association Model Code of Judicial Conduct for Administrative Law Judges.
ADR: General Information
Is ADR available at one or more points during the hearing process?: 
Is ADR a mandatory or voluntary process?: 
Verified by Agency: 
Not verified