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(1) When a hearing is requested by a party to a contested case, the OALJ will allocate the case file to an ALJ. Except as provided in this rule, once a case is assigned to an ALJ, the case shall be the continuing responsibility of that ALJ until a final decision and order is entered and the time for judicial review has expired. If judicial review is filed, the ALJ will lose jurisdiction over the case and will regain jurisdiction only if the district court remands the case to the CSSD for further proceedings.

(2) The duties of an ALJ are interchangeable among the judges during the absence or disability of the presiding ALJ. An ALJ making an order for the presiding ALJ will be presumed to have acted with the consent of the presiding ALJ.

(3) A presiding ALJ may transfer a case to another ALJ who will then become the presiding ALJ. Notice of the transfer shall be provided to all parties if the transfer is made subsequent to an assignment notice filed under (5). As an exception to (6)(a), the substitute ALJ shall give the parties reasonable time, determined according to the circumstances of the case, to submit a motion for disqualification.

(4) For the purposes of (6), when a contested case is assigned to a presiding ALJ for hearing, the OALJ will notify the parties of the assignment. This notice will be included as part of the order setting a hearing date.

(5) An ALJ may make an order or give notice of recusal or self-disqualification at any time.

(6) A party may submit a motion for disqualification of a presiding ALJ as provided by 2-4-611(4), MCA. The motion shall be heard and determined by an ALJ other than the one named in the motion.

(a) Motions for disqualification of a presiding ALJ must be filed with the OALJ within 10 calendar days of the effective date of service of the order setting the matter for hearing. If the ALJ fails to rule on the motion before the day set for the hearing, or if the motion is not timely filed, the motion shall be considered denied.

(b) Except as may be provided by 2-4-701, MCA determinations of motions for disqualification are not subject to judicial review but may be considered as part of a judicial review of the final decision and order in a contested case.


History: 17-4-105, 40-5-202, 40-5-262, 40-5-272, 40-5-273, 40-5-405, 40-5-713, 40-5-825, 40-5-906, MCA; IMP, 17-4-105, 40-5-157, 40-5-202, 40-5-208, 40-5-226, 40-5-233, 40-5-261, 40-5-271, 40-5-273, 40-5-414, 40-5-431, 40-5-703, 40-5-710, 40-5-821, 40-5-822, 40-5-823, 40-5-824, 40-5-906, MCA; NEW, 2000 MAR p. 3547, Eff. 12/22/00; AMD, 2020 MAR p. 966, Eff. 5/30/20.

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