MSHA - Code of Federal Regulations - 30 CFR 44.22
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MSHA - Title 30 CFR
30 CFR § 44.22
Administrative law judges; powers and duties.

(a) Powers. An administrative law judge designated to preside over a hearing shall have all powers necessary or appropriate to conduct a fair, full, and impartial hearing, including the following:

(1) To administer oaths and affirmations;

(2) To issue subpoenas on his own motion or upon written application of a party;

(3) To rule upon offers of proof and receive relevant evidence;

(4) To take depositions or have depositions taken when the ends of justice would be served;

(5) To provide for discovery and determine its scope;

(6) To regulate the course of the hearing and the conduct of parties and their counsel;

(7) To consider and rule upon procedural requests;

(8) To hold conferences for settlement or simplification of issues by consent of the parties;

(9) To make decisions in accordance with the Act, this part, and section 557 of title 5 of the United States Code; and

(10) To take any other appropriate action authorized by this part, section 556 of title 5 of the United States Code, or the Act.

(b) Disqualification. (1) When an administrative law judge deems himself disqualified to preside over a particular hearing, he shall withdraw therefrom by notice on the record directed to the Chief Administrative Law Judge.

(2) Any party who deems an administrative law judge for any reason to be disqualified to preside or continue to preside over a particular hearing, may file with the Chief Administrative Law Judge of the Department of Labor a motion to be supported by affidavits setting forth the alleged grounds for disqualification. The Chief Administrative Law Judge shall rule upon the motion.

(c) Contumacious conduct; failure or refusal to appear or obey rulings of a presiding administrative law judge. (1) Contumacious conduct at any hearing before the administrative law judge shall be grounds for exclusion from the hearing.

(2) If a witness or party refuses to answer a question after being directed to do so or refuses to obey an order to provide or permit discovery, the administrative law judge may make such orders with regard to the refusal as are just and appropriate, including an order denying the application of a petitioner or regulating the contents of the record of the hearing.

(d) Referral to Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and Evidence. On any procedural question not regulated by this part, the act, or the Administrative Procedure Act, an administrative law judge shall be guided to the extent practicable by any pertinent provisions of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure or Federal Rules of Evidence, as appropriate.

(e) Remand. The presiding administrative law judge shall be authorized to remand the petition for modification proceeding to the appropriate Administrator based upon new evidence which was not available to the Administrator and which may have materially affected the Administrator's proposed decision and order. Remand may be upon the judge's own motion or the motion of any party, and shall be granted in the discretion of the presiding administrative law judge.

[43 FR 29518, July 7, 1978, as amended at 55 FR 53442, Dec. 28, 1990]