Page images
PDF
EPUB

(4) Establish a schedule for the accelerated resolution of the appeal; and

(5) Assure that procedures have been instituted for informal discussions on the possibility of settlement of any or all of the disputes in question.

(c) Failure by either party to request an oral hearing within 15 days of receipt of notice of the election under Rule 6 shall be deemed a waiver and an election to submit on the record under Rule 10.

(d) The subpoena power set forth in Rule 18 is available for use under the Accelerated procedure.

(e) The filing of pleadings, motions, discovery proceedings or prehearing procedures will be permitted only to the extent consistent with the requirement for conducting the hearing at the scheduled time and place or, if no hearing is scheduled, the closing of the record at an early time so as to permit decision of the appeal within the target limit of 180 days. The Board, in its discretion, may impose shortened time periods for any actions required or permitted under these rules, necessary to enable the Board to decide the appeal within the target date, allowing whatever time, up to 30 days, that it considers necessary for the preparation of the decision after closing the record and the filing of briefs, if any.

(1) Decisions in appeals considered under the Accelerated procedure will be rendered by a single Administrative Judge with the concurrence of another assigned Administrative Judge or an additional member in the event of disagreement.

Rule 15 Settling the Record. (a) The record upon which the Board's decision will be rendered consists of the documents, papers and exhibits admitted in evidence, and the pleadings, prehearing conference memoranda or orders, prehearing briefs, admissions, stipulations, transcripts of conferences and hearings, and posthearing briefs. The record will, at all reasonable times, be available for inspection by the parties at the office of the Board. In cases submitted pursuant to Rule 10 the evidentiary records shall be comprised of those documents, papers and exhibits submitted by the parties and admitted by the Board.

(b) Except as the Board, in its discretion, may otherwise order, no proof shall be received in evidence after completion of the evidentiary hearing or, in cases submitted on the record, after notification by the Board that the case is ready for decision.

(C) The weight to be attached to any evidence of record will rest within the sound discretion of the Board. The Board may in any case require either party, with appropriate notice to the other party, to submit additional evidence on any matter relevant to the appeal.

Rule 16 Discovery-General. (a) General Policy and Protective Orders—The parties

are encouraged to engage in voluntary discovery procedures. In connection with any deposition or other discovery procedure, the Board may make any order required to protect a party or person from annoyance, embarrassment, or undue burden or expense. Those orders may include limitations on the scope, method, time and place for discovery, and provisions for protecting trade secrets or other confidential information or documents.

(b) Expenses-Each party bears its own expenses associated with discovery, unless in the discretion of the Board, the expenses are apportioned otherwise.

(c) Subpoenas-Where appropriate, a party may request the issuance of a subpoena under the provisions of Rule 18.

Rule 17 Discovery-Depositions, Interrogatories, Admissions, Production and Inspection. (a) When Depositions Permitted—If the parties are unable to agree upon the taking of a deposition, the Board may, upon application of either party and for good cause shown, order the taking of testimony of any person by deposition upon oral examination or written interrogatories before any officer authorized to administer oaths at the place of examination,

(b) Orders on Depositions—The time, place, and manner of taking depositions shall be as mutually agreed by the parties, or failing such agreement, as governed by order of the Board.

(c) Depositions as Evidence-No testimony taken by depositions shall be considered as part of the evidence in the hearing of an appeal until such testimony is offered and received as evidence at such hearing. It will not ordinarily be received as evidence if the deponent is present and can testify at the hearing. In such instances, however, the deposition may be used to contradict or impeach the testimony of the deponent given at the hearing. In cases submitted on the record, the Board may, in its discretion, receive depositions to supplement the record.

(d) Interrogatories, etc.-After an appeal has been filed with the Board, a party may serve on the other party: (1) Written interrogatories to be addressed separately in writing, signed under oath and answered within 30 days unless objections are filed within 10 days of receipt; (2) a request for the admission of specified facts or the authenticity of any documents, to be answered or objected to within 30 days after service. The factual statements and the authenticity of the documents shall be deemed admitted upon failure of a party, to timely respond; and (3) a request for the production, inspection and copying of any documents or objects not privileged, which are relevant to the appeal.

(e) Any discovery engaged in under this Rule shall be subject to the provisions of Rule 16.

Rule 18 Subpoenas. (a) Voluntary Cooperation-Each party is expected to cooperate and make available witnesses and evidence under its control without issuance of a subpoena. Additionally, parties will secure voluntary attendance of desired third-party witnesses and production of desired third-party books, papers, documents, or tangible things whenever possible.

(b) Procedure

(1) Upon request of a party and after a showing of relevance a subpoena may be issued requiring the attendance of a witness for the purpose of taking testimony at a deposition or hearing and, if appropriate, the production by the witness, at the deposition or hearing, of documentary evidence, including inspection and copying, as designated in the subpoena.

(2) The request shall identify the name, title, and address of the person to whom the subpoena is addressed, the specific documentary evidence sought, the time and place proposed and a showing of relevancy to the appeal.

(3) Every subpoena shall state the name of the Board, the title of the appeal, and shall command each person to whom it is directed to attend and give testimony, and if appropriate, to produce specified documentary evidence at a time and place therein specified. The presiding Administrative Judge shall sign the subpoena and may, in his discretion, enter the name of the witness, or the documentary evidence sought, or may leave it blank. The party requesting the subpoena shall complete the subpoena before service.

(4) Where the witness is located in a foreign country, a letter rogatory or subpoena may be issued and served under the circumstances and in the manner provided in 28 U.S.C. 1781-1784.

(c) Requests to Quash or Modify-Upon motion made promptly but in any event not later than the time specified in the subpoena for compliance, the Board may: (i) Quash or modify the subpoena if it is unreasonable and oppressive or for other good cause shown; (ii) condition denial of the motion upon payment by the person in whose behalf the subpoena was issued of the reasonable cost of producing the subpoenaed documentary evidence; or (iii) apply protective provisions under Rule 16(a).

(d) Service

(1) The party requesting the subpoena shall arrange for service.

(2) A subpoena may be served at any place by a United States Marshal or Deputy Marshal, or by any other person who is not a party and not less than 18 years of age. Service of a subpoena shall be made by personally delivering a copy to the person named therein and tendering the fees for one day's attendance and the mileage that would be allowed in the courts of the United States. When the subpoena is issued on behalf of the

United States or an officer or agency of the United States, money payments need not be tendered in advance of attendance.

(3) The party requesting a subpoena shall be responsible for the payment of fees and mileage of the witness and of the officer who serves the subpoena. The failure to make payment of such charges on demand may be deemed by the Board as a sufficient ground for striking the testimony of the witness and any documentary evidence the witness has produced.

(e) Contumacy or Refusal to Obey a Subpoena. In case of a contumacy or refusal to obey a subpoena by a person who resides, is found, or transacts business within the jurisdiction of a United States Court, the Board will apply to the Court through the Attorney General of the United States for an order requiring the person to appear before the Board or a member thereof to give testimony or produce evidence or both. Any failure of any such person to obey the order of the Court may be punished by the Court as a contempt thereof.

Rule 19 Time and Service of Papers. (a) All pleadings, briefs or other papers submitted to the Board shall be filed in triplicate and a copy shall be sent to other parties. Such communications shall be sent by delivering in person or by mailing, properly addressed with postage prepaid, to the opposing party or, where the party is represented by counsel, to its counsel. Pleadings, briefs or other papers filed with the Board shall be accompanied by a statement, signed by the originating party, saying when, how, and to whom a copy was sent.

(b) The Board may extend any time limitation for good cause and in accordance with legal precedent. All requests for time extensions shall be in writing except when raised during a recorded hearing.

(c) In computing any period of time, the day of the event from which the designated period of time begins to run shall not be included, but the last day of the period shall be included unless it is a Saturday, Sunday, or a legal holiday, in which event the period shall run to the end of the next business day. Unless otherwise stated in a Rule or Board Order, dates will be met and papers considered filed when deposited in the mail system of the U.S. Postal Service, or hand-delivery is acknowledged at the Board offices.

HEARINGS Rule 20 Hearings: Time and Place. Hearings will be held at such places determined by the Board to best serve the interests of the parties and the Board. Hearings will be scheduled at the discretion of the Board with due consideration to the regular order of appeals, the requirements for expedited or accelerated procedures and other pertinent factors. On request by either party and for good

cause, the Board may, in its discretion, change the time and place of a hearing.

Rule 21 Hearings: Notice. The parties shall be given at least 15 days notice of time and place set for hearings. In scheduling hearings, the Board will consider the desires of the parties and the requirement for just and inexpensive determination of appeals without unnecessary delay. Notices of hearing shall be promptly acknowledged by the parties. Failure to promptly acknowledge shall be deemed consent to the time and place.

Rule 22 Hearings: Unercused Absence of a Party. The unexcused absence of a party at the time and place set for hearing will not be occasion for delay. In the event of such absence, the presiding Administrative Judge may order the hearing to proceed and the case will be regarded as submitted by the absent party as under ale

Rule 23 Hearings: Rules of Evidence and Elamination of Witnesses. (a) Nature of Hearings-Hearings shall be as informal as may be reasonable and appropriate under the circumstances. Appellant and the respondent may offer such evidence as they deem appropriate and as would be admissible under the Federal Rules of Evidence or in the sound discretion of the presiding judge. The parties may stipulate the testimony that would be given by a witness if the witness were present. The Board may require evidence in addition to that offered by the parties.

(b) Examination of Witnesses-Witnesses before the Board will be examined orally under oath or affirmation, unless the presiding Administrative Judge shall otherwise order.

Rule 27 Motion for Reconsideration. (a) Motion for reconsideration shall set forth specifically the grounds relied upon to sustain the motion and shall be filed within 30 days after receipt of a copy of the Board's decision.

(b) Motions for reconsideration of cases decided under either the Small Claims (Expedited) procedure or the Accelerated procedure need not be decided within the original 120-day or 180-day limit, but shall be processed and decided rapidly.

Rule 28 Remand from Court. Whenever any court remands a case to the Board for further proceedings, each of the parties shall, within 20 days of such remand, submit a report to the Board recommending procedures to be followed so as to comply with the court's order. The Board shall consider the reports and enter special orders.

DISMISSALS

Rule 29 Dismissal Without Prejudice. In certain cases, appeals docketed before the Board are required to be placed in a suspense status and the Board is unable to proceed with disposition thereof for reasons not within the control of the Board. Where the suspension has continued, or may continue, for an inordinate length of time, the Board may, in its discretion, dismiss such appeals from its docket without prejudice to their restoration when the cause of suspension has been removed. Unless either party or the Board acts within three years to reinstate any appeal dismissed without prejudice, the dismissal shall be deemed with prejudice.

Rule 30 Dismissal for Failure to Prosecute. Whenever a record discloses the failure of any party to file documents required by these rules, respond to notices or correspondence from the Board or otherwise indicates an intention not to continue the prosecution or defense of an appeal, the Board may issue an order requiring the offending party to show cause why the appeal should not be dismissed or granted, as appropriate. If no cause, the Board may take such action as it deems reasonable and proper.

REPRESENTATION Rule 24 Appellant. An individual appellant may appear before the Board in person, a corporation by one of its officers; and a partnership or joint venture by one of its members; or any of these by an attorney at law duly licensed in any state, commonwealth, territory, the District of Columbia, or in a foreign country. An attorney representing an appellant shall file a written notice of appearance with the Board.

Rule 25 Respondent. Counsel may, in accordance with their authority, represent the interest of the Government or other client before the Board. They shall file notices of appearance with the Board, and serve notice on appellant or appellant's attorney.

BOARD DECISION Rule 26 Decisions. Except as allowed under Rule 13, decisions of the Board shall be in writing upon the record as described in Rule 15 and will be forwarded simultaneously to both parties. The rules of the Board and all final orders and decisions shall be available for public inspection at the offices of the Board.

SANCTIONS Rule 31 Failure to Obey Board Order. If any party fails or refuses to obey an order issued by the Board, the Board may issue such orders as it considers necessary to the just and expeditious conduct of the appeal, including dismissal with prejudice. [44 FR 64270, Nov. 6, 1979. Redesignated at 62 FR 24808, May 7, 1997)

Subpart B [Reserved]

Subpart C-Procedures Relating other expenses was timely filed and

to Awards Under the Equal was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. Access to Justice Act

$ 1023.303 Proceedings covered.

(a) The Act applies to appeals from AUTHORITY: Sec. 644, Title VI, Pub. L. 95–91, 91 Stat. 599; 5 U.S.C. 504.

decisions of contracting officers made

pursuant to section 6 of the Contract SOURCE: 57 FR 53542, Nov. 12, 1992, unless

Disputes Act of 1978 (41 U.S.C. 605) to otherwise noted.

the Board as provided in section 8 of GENERAL PROVISIONS

that Act (41 U.S.C. 607).

(b) If a proceeding includes both mat81023.300 Definitions.

ters covered by the Act and matters For purposes of these procedures:

specifically excluded from coverage, Agency Counsel means the attorney

any award made will include only fees representing the Department or other

and expenses related to covered issues. agency in a proceeding under this sub

8 1023.304 Eligibility of applicants. part.

Board means the Department of En- (a) To be eligible for an award of atergy Board of Contract Appeals.

torney fees and other expenses under Covered Proceeding means an under

the Act, the applicant must be a party lying proceeding as specified by para

to the covered proceeding for which it graph (a) of $ 1023.303.

seeks an award. The term "party" is Days means calendar days.

defined in 5 U.S.C. 551(3). The applicant

must show that it meets all conditions $ 1023.301 Purpose of these rules. of eligibility set out in this subpart. The Equal Access to Justice Act, 5

(b) The types of eligible applicants U.S.C. 504 (called “the Act” in this sub

are as follows: part), provides for the award of attor- (1) An individual with a net worth of ney fees and other expenses to eligible

not more than $2 million; individuals and entities who are parties

(2) The sole owner of an unincorto covered proceedings. An eligible porated business who has a net worth party may receive an award when it of not more than $7 million, including prevails over an agency, unless the both personal and business interests. agency's position was substantially

and not more than 500 employees; justified special circumstances

(3) A charitable or other tax-exempt make an award unjust. These proce- organization described in section dures describe the parties eligible for 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code awards and covered Board proceedings. (26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3)) with not more than They also explain how to apply for 500 employees; awards and the procedures and stand- (4) A cooperative association as deards that the Board will use to make fined in 15(a) of the Agricultural Marthem.

keting Act (12 U.S.C. 1141j(a)) with not

more than 500 employees; and $ 1023.302 When the Act applies.

(5) Any other partnership, corporaThe Act applies to any covered pro- tion, association, unit of local governceeding pending or commenced before ment, or organization with a net worth the Board on or after August 5, 1985. It of not more than $7 million and not also applies to any such proceeding more than 500 employees. commenced before the Board on or (c) For the purpose of eligibility, the after October 1, 1984, and finally dis- net worth and number of employees of posed of before August 5, 1985, provided an applicant shall be determined as of that an application for fees and ex- the date the applicant filed its appeal penses, as described in 1023.310 of this under 41 U.S.C. 606. subpart, has been filed with the Board (d) An applicant who owns an uninwithin 30 days after August 5, 1985, and corporated business will be considered to any such proceeding pending on or as an "individual” rather than a “sole commenced on or after October 1, 1981, owner of an unincorporated business" in which an application for fees and if the issues on which the applicant

or

(b) An award will be reduced or denied if the applicant has unduly or unreasonably protracted the proceeding or if special circumstances make the award sought unjust.

ex

prevails are related primarily to personal interests rather than to business interests.

(e) The employees of an applicant include all persons who regularly perform services for remuneration for the applicant, under the applicant's direction and control. Part-time employees shall be included on a proportional basis.

(f) The net worth and number of employees of the applicant and all of its affiliates shall be aggregated to determine eligibility. Any individual, corporation or other entity that directly or indirectly controls or owns a majority of the voting shares or other interests of the applicant, or any corporation or other entity of which the applicant directly or indirectly owns or controls a majority of the voting shares or other interest, will be considered an affiliate for purposes of this part, unless the Board determines that such treatment would be unjust and contrary to the purposes of the Act in light of the actual relationship between the affiliated entities. In addition, the Board may determine that financial relationships of the applicant, other than those described in this paragraph, constitute special circumstances that would make an award unjust.

(g) An applicant that participates in a proceeding primarily on behalf of one or more other persons or entities that would be ineligible is not itself eligible for an award.

$ 1023.306 Allowable fees and

penses. (a) Awards will be based on rates customarily charged by persons engaged in the business of acting as attorneys or expert witnesses even if the services were made available without charge or at a reduced rate to the applicant.

(b) No award for the fee of an attorney under these rules may exceed $75 per hour. No award to compensate an expert witness may exceed the highest rate at which the respondent agency or agencies pay expert witnesses. However, an award may also include the reasonable expenses of the attorney or witness as a separate item, if the attorney or witness ordinarily charges clients separately for such expenses.

(c) In determining the reasonableness of the fee sought for an attorney or expert witness, the Board shall consider the following:

(1) If the attorney or witness is in private practice, his or her customary fees for similar services, or, if an employee of the applicant, the fully allocated costs of the services;

(2) The prevailing rate for similar services in the community in which the attorney or witness ordinarily performs services;

(3) The time actually spent in the representation of the applicant;

(4) The time reasonably spent in light of the difficulty or complexity of the issues in the proceeding; and

(5) Such other factors as may bear on the value of the services provided.

(d) The reasonable cost of any study, analysis, engineering report, test, project or similar matter prepared on behalf of a party may be awarded, to the extent that the charge for the services does not exceed the prevailing rate for similar services, and the study or other matter was necessary for preparation of applicant's case.

$ 1023.305 Standards for awards.

(a) A prevailing applicant may receive an award for fees and expenses incurred in connection with a proceeding or in a significant and discrete substantive portion of the proceeding, unless the position of the agency over which the applicant has prevailed was substantially justified. The position of the agency includes, in addition to the position taken by the agency in the covered proceeding, the action or failure to act by the agency upon which the covered proceeding is based. The burden of proof that an award should not be made to an eligible prevailing applicant because the agency's position was substantially justified is on the agency counsel.

« PreviousContinue »