Chapter 1: Subchapter B - Rules of Conduct

Subchapter B - Rules of Conduct

§ 1-11 Appearances.

(a) A party may appear in person, by an attorney, or by a duly authorized representative. A person appearing for a party, including by telephone conference call, is required to file a notice of appearance with OATH. Docketing of a case by an attorney or representative of a party shall be deemed to constitute the filing of a notice of appearance by that person. The filing of any papers by an attorney or representative who has not previously appeared shall constitute the filing of a notice of appearance by that person, and shall conform to the requirements of subdivisions (b) and (d) of this section.

(b) The appearance of a member in good standing of the bar of a court of general jurisdiction of any state or territory of the United States shall be indicated by the suffix "Esq." and the designation "attorney for (petitioner or respondent)", and the appearance of any other person shall be indicated by the designation "representative for (petitioner or respondent)".

(c) Absent extraordinary circumstances, no application shall be made or argued by any attorney or other representative who has not filed a notice of appearance. Participation in a telephone conference call on behalf of a party by an attorney or representative of the party shall be deemed an appearance by the attorney or representative. Nonetheless, upon making such an appearance, the attorney or representative shall file a notice of appearance in conformity with subdivisions (b) and (d) of this section.

(d) A person may not file a notice of appearance on behalf of a party unless he or she has been retained by that party to represent the party before OATH. Filing a notice of appearance constitutes a representation that the person appearing has been so retained. Filing a notice of appearance pursuant to §1-11(a) of this subchapter constitutes a representation that the person appearing has read and is familiar with the rules of this subchapter.
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§ 1-12 Withdrawal and Substitution of Counsel.

(a) An attorney who has filed a notice of appearance shall not withdraw from representation without the permission of the administrative law judge, on application. Withdrawals shall not be granted unless upon consent of the client or when other cause exists as delineated in the applicable provisions of the Code of Professional Responsibility.

(b) Notices of substitution of counsel may be served and filed more than twenty days before trial without leave of the administrative law judge. Applications for later substitutions of counsel shall be granted freely absent prejudice or substantial delay of proceedings.

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§ 1-13 Conduct; Suspension From Practice at OATH.

(a) Individuals appearing before OATH shall comply with the rules of this chapter and any other applicable rules, and shall comply with the orders and directions of the administrative law judge.

(b) Individuals appearing before OATH shall conduct themselves at all times in a dignified, orderly and decorous manner. In particular, at the hearing, all parties, their attorneys or representatives, and observers shall address themselves only to the administrative law judge, avoid colloquy and argument among themselves, and cooperate with the orderly conduct of the hearing.

(c) Attorneys and other representatives appearing before OATH shall be familiar with the rules of this title.

(d) Attorneys appearing before OATH shall conduct themselves in accordance with the canons, ethical considerations and disciplinary rules set forth in the code of professional responsibility in their representation of their clients, in their dealings with other parties, attorneys and representatives before OATH, and with OATH’s administrative law judges and staff.

(e) Willful failure of any person to abide by the standards of conduct stated in paragraphs (a) through (d) of this section, may, in the discretion of the administrative law judge, be cause for the imposition of sanctions. Such sanctions may include formal admonishment or reprimand, assessment of costs or imposition of a fine, exclusion of the offending person from the proceedings, exclusion or limitation of evidence, adverse evidentiary inference, adverse disposition of the case, in whole or in part, or other sanctions as the administrative law judge may determine to be appropriate. The imposition of sanctions may be made after a reasonable opportunity to be heard. The form of the hearing shall depend upon the nature of the conduct and the circumstances of the case.

(f) In the event that an attorney or other representative of a party persistently fails to abide by the standards of conduct stated in paragraphs (a) through (d) of this section, the chief administrative law judge may, upon notice to the attorney or representative and a reasonable opportunity to rebut the claims against him or her, suspend that attorney or representative from appearing at OATH, either for a specified period of time or indefinitely until the attorney or representative demonstrates to the satisfaction of the chief administrative law judge that the basis for the suspension no longer exists.
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§ 1-14 Ex Parte Communications.

(a) Except for ministerial matters, and except on consent, in an emergency, or as provided in § 1-31(a), communications with the administrative law judge concerning a case shall only occur with all parties present. If an administrative law judge receives an ex parte communication concerning the merits of a case to which he or she is assigned, then he or she shall promptly disclose the communication by placing it on the record, in detail, including all written and oral communications and identifying all individuals with whom he or she has communicated. A party desiring to rebut the ex parte communication shall be allowed to do so upon request.

(b) Communications between OATH and a party docketing a case, to the extent necessary to the placement of a case on the trial calendar or conference calendar pursuant to § 1-26(a) , shall be deemed to be ministerial communications. Communications between OATH and a party docketing a case, to the extent necessary to a request for expedited calendaring pursuant to § 1-26(c), shall be deemed to be emergency communications.

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