GA - GAC
Rules and Regulations of the State of Georgia
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Subject 616-1-1 ORGANIZATION OF OSAH

Rule 616-1-1-.01 Organization

(1) Administrative Court. The Office of State Administrative Hearings, which is part of the executive branch of state government, shall also be known as the "Administrative Court" or "Court," which shall be comprised of the Chief State Administrative Law Judge, Assistant Administrative Law Judges, and other personnel.
(2) Jurisdiction. The Court has jurisdiction over the adjudication of contested cases pursuant to O.C.G.A. §§ 50-13-2(2), -41, and -42. Other agencies may contract with the Court for adjudication services.
(3) Chief State Administrative Law Judge (Chief Judge).
(a) The Court shall be administered by the Chief Judge. The Chief Judge is appointed by the Governor for a term of six (6) years, is eligible for reappointment, and may be removed by the Governor for cause.
(b) The Chief Judge is the chief presiding and administrative officer of the Court and is authorized to appoint Judges and support personnel and promulgate rules of practice and procedure before the Court.
(4) Administrative Law Judges.The Chief Judge may appoint full-time and part-time Assistant Administrative Law Judges. Each Judge of the Court is appointed by the Chief Judge and shall exercise the powers conferred upon the Chief Judge in all contested cases assigned to them. Each Judge shall have been admitted to the practice of law in this state for a period of at least seven years and shall be in the unclassified service.
(5) Special Assistant Administrative Law Judges. The Chief Judge may appoint Special Assistant Administrative Law Judges on a temporary or case-by-case basis as may be necessary for the proper performance of the duties of the Court, pursuant to a fee schedule established in advance by the Chief Judge.
(6) Other Personnel. The Chief Judge may appoint other personnel, which may include, but not be limited to, the following:
(a) a Deputy Chief Judge, who assists the Chief Judge in managing the Court;
(b) an Executive Assistant to the Chief Judge, who is responsible for assisting the Chief Judge with administrative tasks;
(c) Clerks, who are responsible for recordkeeping and receiving and filing case-initiating documents; and
(d) Case management assistants, who are responsible for assisting their assigned judges with administrative tasks and providing information to and receiving submissions from the public.

Rule 616-1-1-.02 Requesting Information from or Making Submissions to the Court

(1) General. General information about the Court's operations may be obtained from the Executive Assistant to the Chief Judge.
(2) Rulemaking. Requests for information or submissions concerning public participation in rulemaking pursuant to Rule 03 may be directed to the Executive Assistant to the Chief Judge.

Rule 616-1-1-.03 Rulemaking Procedures

(1) Submission. To petition for the promulgation, amendment, or repeal of a rule, a written petition shall be submitted to the Chief Judge.
(2) Contents. The petition shall state fully
(a) the rule involved;
(b) the reason for the desired change;
(c) the parties that will or can be affected by the petitioned change; and
(d) any additional facts known to the petitioner that might influence the decision of the Chief Judge to initiate rulemaking.

Rule 616-1-1-.04 Declaratory Rulings

(1) Requirements. A declaratory ruling must affect a specific fact situation and specific parties, including the person requesting the ruling. The Chief Judge shall not issue a declaratory ruling on an issue in a matter pending before a Judge or on a hypothetical fact situation.
(2) Petition for Declaratory Ruling.
(a) To petition for a declaratory ruling as to the applicability of a statute or rule, a petitioner shall submit a written petition to the Chief Judge. The petition shall state all of the facts, including the names of those parties involved in the fact situation, and shall include a statement of the legal issue to be resolved.
(b) The petitioner shall serve a copy of the petition on all persons involved in the fact situation by personal delivery or first class mail, and shall attach to the petition a certificate or acknowledgment of service.
(c) Any person may seek to participate in a declaratory ruling proceeding in the matter and under the standards provided by O.C.G.A. § 50-13-14.

Rule 616-1-1-.05 Continuing Judicial Education

(1) The minimum continuing judicial education requirement for a Judge is as follows:
(a) A Judge shall obtain twelve (12) hours of credit annually for instruction from an approved continuing judicial or legal education program.
(b) A Judge who earns more than twelve (12) hours of credit in a year may, with express approval of the Chief Judge, apply the excess credit to the requirement for the succeeding year.
(c) Of the twelve (12) hours of credit obtained each year, at least one (1) hour of credit shall relate to the Code of Judicial Conduct.
(d) The Chief Judge may exempt a Judge from the continuing judicial education requirement upon a finding of undue hardship. To obtain an exemption, a Judge shall file a request for exemption with the Chief Judge no later than the first day of December for the year the exemption is sought.
(2) A Judge may receive credit by participating in Continuing Judicial Education programs of the Court. A Judge who seeks credit for attending programs listed in subparagraphs (a) through (e) shall provide to the Chief Judge in advance of attendance a description of the program for which credit is sought. A Judge may receive credit by participating in one or more of the following:
(a) programs sponsored by the Institute of Continuing Legal Education accredited by the State Bar of Georgia's Commission on Continuing Lawyer Competency;
(b) programs sponsored by the Institute of Continuing Judicial Education;
(c) courses sponsored by the National Judicial College or any American Bar Association accredited law school, whether for credit or not;
(d) programs sponsored by the National Association of the Administrative Law Judiciary and its affiliates; or
(e) other education programs approved in advance of attendance by the Chief Judge.
(3) A Judge shall receive one (1) hour of credit for each hour of attendance in a program listed in paragraph (2), three (3) hours of credit for each hour of teaching in such a program, six (6) hours of credit for each hour of instruction when a handout is prepared and distributed, and two (2) hours of credit for each hour as a panelist.
(4) A Judge shall file a compliance report with the Chief Judge no later than the end of the second week in December of the year for which the report is submitted.

Rule 616-1-1-.06 Code of Judicial Conduct

The Georgia Code of Judicial Conduct shall apply to all Judges of the Administrative Court.

Rule 616-1-1-.07 Oath of Office

Judges of the Administrative Court shall take the oath prescribed for judges of the Georgia superior courts.