I-1-5-5.Office of Appellate Operations Processing

Last Update: 6/24/05 (Transmittal I-1-53)

A. Oral Inquiries Generally

When OAO directly receives an oral litigation-related inquiry, OAO will ask the caller to submit a written inquiry and send it to the Executive Director, OAO. If the caller objects to submitting a written inquiry, OAO may, if necessary, refer the caller to the OPPE Director at the telephone number in I-1-5-2. Regardless of whether the caller expresses an intent to submit a written inquiry or is referred to the OPPE Director, OAO will make a written report of contact containing the information listed in I-1-5-2 C. for each litigation-related inquiry and immediately furnish the written report of contact to the Executive Director's office.

The Executive Director's office will hand carry a copy of each written report of contact and the original of any subsequent written inquiry, if any, to the OPPE Director.

B. Oral and Written Inquiries Concerning Pending Requests for Review and Other Actions Pending With the Appeals Council

When OAO receives an oral or written litigation-related inquiry that relates to a pending request for review or other action pending with the Appeals Council, OAO will involve the Executive Director. The Executive Director's office will follow the steps as outlined in A. above for oral inquiries and will:

  1. provide a copy of each written report of contact and the subsequent written correspondence, if any, or original written inquiry to the OPPE Director;

  2. if circumstances warrant, contact the OPPE Director to discuss the inquiry;

  3. coordinate any action that OAO must take as a result of the inquiry.; and

  4. provide OPPE with a copy of any written response.

NOTE:

There should be few instances in which OAO will need to suspend action on a pending case because of an inquiry.

C. Written Referrals from DCPI Concerning Pending Requests for Review and Other Actions Pending With the Appeals Council

When OAO receives from DCPI a written report of contact of an oral litigation-related inquiry, as described in I-1-5-3 B., the Executive Director's office will:

  1. advise the OPPE Director to ensure his knowledge of the DCPI referral and, if necessary, discuss OAO's proposed response, if any; and

  2. ensure that OAO takes timely and appropriate action as a result of the inquiry.

NOTE:

There should be few instances in which OAO will need to suspend action on a pending case because of an inquiry.

D. Oral Inquiries or Written Referrals from DCPI Concerning Pending Civil Actions

When the OAO Executor Director's Office provides an OAO Court Case Preparation and Review Branch (CCPRB) with an oral litigation-related inquiry on a pending individual civil action, or a written report of contact from DCPI of an oral litigation- related inquiry pursuant to I-1-5-3 B. above in a pending claim, the CCPRB analyst will:

  1. refer the caller or the DCPI written report of contact to the OGC attorney responsible for the case; and

  2. a. if the case is pending action by the Appeals Council following court remand and it appears the inquiry may affect the Appeals Council's action, coordinate suspending the Appeals Council action after consultation with the responsible OGC attorney; or

    b. if the case is on remand to an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) and it appears the inquiry may affect the ALJ's action, coordinate suspending the ALJ action after consultation with the responsible OGC attorney; and

  3. regularly follow-up with the responsible OGC attorney, if necessary, until the issue is resolved; and

  4. provide OPPE with a copy of any written inquiry or written report of contact and a copy of any written response.

NOTE:

There should be few instances in which OHA will need to suspend action on a pending case because of an inquiry.