Temporary Suspension of In-Person Hearings

Friday, August 6, 2021

Glynn F. Voisin, Chief Administrative Law Judge:

NOTICE:  Due to changing circumstances regarding the novel coronavirus COVID-19 and the new delta variant, the following order is issued. This order supplements the July 30, 2021 order resuming in-person hearings.                 

In view of recently updated guidance from the CDC highlighting the risks presented by the novel coronavirus COVID-19 and especially its rapidly spreading delta variant, the Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission, Office of the Chief Administrative Law Judge (OCALJ) is, effective immediately, strongly discouraging the scheduling of in-person hearings, settlement judge conferences and mediations until December 31, 2021. At the discretion of the presiding Administrative Law Judge and in coordination with the parties, such proceedings may be held by videoconference or by telephone.

In the event a Judge determines in-person proceedings are necessary for all or part of a hearing, settlement conference or mediation, he or she will seek authorization of the undersigned Chief Administrative Law Judge prior to scheduling any such proceeding. Such authorization should only be sought where absolutely necessary and is unlikely to be granted absent an extraordinarily compelling need and strict protocols ensuring the safety of all in attendance. No party, representative or witness shall be compelled to attend an in-person hearing or conference during the pendency of this order.

If you have any questions with regard to the notice, please contact the presiding Administrative Law Judge.