- An opening statement is not proof but is your opportunity to frame the issue and explain what you plan to prove in your case.
- During the proof portion of the hearing, you have the opportunity to testify under oath, call witnesses, cross-examine (ask questions of) opposing witnesses, and present exhibits. The ALJ will determine if evidence can be considered.
- A closing argument is usually a brief statement that sums up your proof and how that proof demonstrates why you should prevail in your case. It is important to note that the rules of evidence apply in cases before APD.
- You have the right to retain counsel to represent you although in most cases it is not a requirement.
- Depending on the type of case you have, the hearing may be held in-person, by teleconference, or by videoconference.
- Some cases are heard directly by an ALJ. Other case types are heard by a board or commission sitting with an ALJ. The board or commission will determine the outcome of the case, while the ALJ makes legal rulings but does not decide the final outcome. Likewise, there are also cases heard before a Commissioner’s designee sitting with an ALJ. In these cases, the Commissioner’s designee determines the outcome of the case, while the ALJ makes legal rulings but does not decide the final outcome.
Board of Appeals:
Cases brought before the Board of Appeals (BOA) involve the discipline and/or termination of an employee of state government. The parties in the case are the employee and the employing government department or agency. Cases are usually pre-set for a specified hearing date based on the Board’s availability. In these cases, the Board sits with the ALJ. The ALJ makes all rulings related to legal issues presented while the Board decides the outcome of the case. An ALJ from APD’s Board of Appeals’ Intake Team will hold a pre-hearing conference with the parties of a case to confirm the hearing date, venue, and other logistics for the hearing. The case may or may not be reassigned to a different ALJ for the actual hearing, depending upon the schedule. Cases may be heard by videoconference or in-person in Nashville, depending upon the parties’ requests.
Board of Equalization:
Cases brought before the Board of Equalization (BOE) involve appeals of residential and commercial property taxes. The parties in the case are the individual or business and the respective county assessor’s office. Cases are usually pre-set for a specified hearing date. In these cases, the ALJ sits alone for the hearing and decides the outcome of the case.
Commerce and Insurance:
Department of Commerce and Insurance (C & I) cases usually involve proposed discipline of a licensed professional or for the performance of unlicensed work. Commerce and Insurance cases can be heard by an ALJ sitting alone or by a Board or Commission. Some hearing dates are pre-set as determined by the meeting schedule of the Board or Commission, and other hearing dates are set by the presiding judge in consultation with the parties.
Department of Health cases usually involve proposed discipline of a licensed health professional. Department of Health cases are usually preset for a specified hearing date with a Board sitting with an ALJ. The ALJ makes all rulings related to legal issues presented while the Board decides the outcome of the case.
Generally, IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) cases involve a parent or child appealing a Local Education Agency’s (LEA) determination as to the child’s individualized education plan (IEP). Typically, hearing or mediation dates for these cases are set by a judge in consultation with the parties. A large majority of these cases are resolved through mediation. Based upon federal laws and rules, there are strict timelines for the resolution of these cases.
Department of Safety and Homeland Security cases typically involve the civil forfeiture of property due to the alleged association of that property with the sale of illegal drugs. APD hears other case types for the Department of Safety and Homeland Security, but civil forfeiture cases are the most common. Hearings are usually pre-set by the Department of Safety and Homeland Security and are initially set via teleconference or videoconference although participants may request an in-person hearing.
Cases before the Division of TennCare (a part of the Department of Finance and Administration) most often involve TennCare’s denial of a service to an individual. TennCare cases are pre-set as a telephone conference initially although participants may request an in-person hearing.
Title IX cases involve alleged sexual harassment or abuse at federally-funded educational institutions. These cases are opened with APD by the Title IX Coordinator at the respective educational institution. Hearing dates are typically set by the presiding judge in consultation with the parties.
None of the Above:
APD hears cases for over 100 state and local government agencies. The case types listed above are the most common. If your type of case is not listed above, you may contact APD for information or request a pre-hearing conference with the ALJ and counsel for the opposing party.