Contested Case Policy
Reviewed June 2019
Minnesota Board of Animal Health (“Board”) steps for a contested case hearing under Minnesota Statutes Chapter 14:
- A party aggrieved with a final decision made by the Board may seek review of the decision by requesting a contested case hearing under Minn. Stat. Chapter 14.
- The request must be in writing, contain a statement of the issue(s) to be addressed as well as the specific relief requested, and submitted to the Board via email: firstname.lastname@example.org; or by registered mail to Minnesota Board of Animal Health, 625 Robert Street North, St. Paul, MN 55155. To be considered timely, the request must be made within 20 days of the Board’s decision. For contested case requests specific to revocation of a farmed cervidae registration, the request must be made within 30 days of the revocation notice. The Board will consider, on a case-by-case basis, any request made later than the required number of days.
- Following receipt of the request, the Board, in consultation with the state of Minnesota Attorney General’s office, will timely initiate a contested case proceeding with the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH). The Office of Administrative Hearing’s Contested Case Hearing Guide is available at this link.
- All contested case hearings will be conducted and decided in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act (see Minn. Stat. Chapter 14) and the procedures set forth in the rules of the Office of Administrative Hearings, parts 1400.5200 to 1400.8401.
- The Board will issue a Notice of and Order for Hearing to the aggrieved party (i.e. the party requesting the hearing) that states the time, date, and place for the hearing; and a statement of the issue(s) to be addressed. This Notice and Order will also be filed with OAH and will state the name of the administrative law judge (ALJ) assigned to the case.
- Before the case is assigned to an ALJ the aggrieved party should file all applicable documents and correspondence with the Board.
- After the ALJ is assigned to the case, the Board will certify the official record to the OAH and all subsequent filings (notice of appearance, motions, exhibits, etc.) must be filed with the OAH by the party filing them.
- Questions from the aggrieved party regarding the contested case hearing process or about preparing for the hearing—including any procedural deadlines—should be directed to the assigned ALJ’s assistant.
- Prior to the hearing, it is important for participants to review the rules of evidence that apply to a contested case hearing found in Minnesota Rules 1400.7300.
- Following the hearing, the ALJ will issue a recommended decision (“report”), and serve a copy of the report on all of the case parties.
- Any party adversely affected by the ALJ’s report may file exceptions with the Board and be given an opportunity to present the case to a majority of the Board members. Exceptions must be filed within 10 days of when the ALJ’s report was served.
- The contested case record closes either upon filing of exceptions to the ALJ’s report and presentation of arguments to the Board or when the time to file exceptions has expired. The Board will notify the parties and the ALJ of the date when the record closed.
- Once the ALJ’s report has been made available to the parties for at least ten days, and the record has closed, Board members will review the ALJ’s decision and the record, and make a final decision on the contested case. The Board will only consider the facts and evidence in the record when making its final decision. In evaluating the evidence in the record, the Board may utilize its experience, technical competence, and specialized knowledge.
- The Board’s final decision will be in writing and will include the Board’s findings of fact and conclusions, citing supportive evidence in the record. If Board members do not follow the recommendation/decision contained in the ALJ’s report, the Board will state specific reasons as to why the Board reached a different decision.
- The Board will serve its final decision upon each party and the ALJ within 90 days of the date the record closes.
- The Board members’ final determination of the case may be appealed to the Court of Appeals. See Minn. Stat. Section 14.63.