U.S. Code of Federal Regulations
Regulations most recently checked for updates: Jan 20, 2020
(a) These appellate procedures apply in cases where a hearing is required by law or Board action. They do not apply to informal matters such as car service, temporary authority, suspension, special permission actions, or to other matters of an interlocutory nature. Abandonments and discontinuance proceedings instituted under 49 U.S.C. 10903 are governed by separate appellate procedures exclusive to those proceedings. (See 49 CFR part 1152)
(b) Requests for appellate relief may relate either to initial decisions or to Board actions other than initial decisions. For each category, this rule describes the types of appeal permitted, the requirements to be observed in filing an appeal, provisions for stay of the action, and the status of the action in the absence of a stay.
(c) Appeals from the decisions of employees acting under authority delegated to them by the Chairman of the Board pursuant to § 1011.6 will be acted upon by the entire Board. Appeals must be filed within 10 days of the date of the action taken by the employee, and responses to appeals must be filed within 10 days thereafter. Such appeals are not favored; they will be granted only in exceptional circumstances to correct a clear error of judgment or to prevent manifest injustice.
This category includes the initial decision of an administrative law judge, individual Board Member, or employee board.
(a) An appeal of right is permitted.
(b) Appeals must be based on one or more of the following grounds:
(1) That a necessary finding of fact is omitted, erroneous, or unsupported by substantial evidence of record;
(2) That a necessary legal conclusion, or finding is contrary to law, Board precedent, or policy;
(3) That an important question of law, policy, or discretion is involved which is without governing precedent; or
(4) That prejudicial procedural error has occurred.
(c) Appeals must detail the assailed findings with supporting citations to the record and authorities.
(d) Appeals and replies shall not exceed 30 pages in length, including argument, and appendices or other attachments, but excluding a table of cases and an index of subject matter.
(e) Appeals must be filed within 20 days after the service date of the decision or within any further period (not to exceed 20 days) the Board may authorize. Replies must be filed within 20 days of the date the appeal is filed.
(f) The timely filing of an appeal to an initial decision will stay the effect of the action pending determination of the appeal.
(g) If an appeal of an initial decision is not timely filed or the Board does not stay the effectiveness on its own motion, the order set forth in the initial decision shall become the action of the Board and be effective at the expiration of the time for filing, unless otherwise provided.
(a) A discretionary appeal of an entire Board action is permitted. Such an appeal should be designated a “petition for reconsideration.”
(b) The petition will be granted only upon a showing of one or more of the following points:
(1) The prior action will be affected materially because of new evidence or changed circumstances.
(2) The prior action involves material error.
(c) The petition must state in detail the nature of and reasons for the relief requested. When, in a petition filed under this section, a party seeks an opportunity to introduce evidence, the evidence must be stated briefly and must not appear to be cumulative, and an explanation must be given why it was not previously adduced.
(d) The petition and any reply must not exceed 20 pages in length. A separate preface and summary of argument, not exceeding 3 pages, may accompany petitions and replies and must accompany those that exceed 10 pages in length.
(e) Petitions must be filed within 20 days after the service of the action or within any further period (not to exceed 20 days) as the Board may authorize.
(f) The filing of a petition will not automatically stay the effect of a prior action, but the Board may stay the effect of the action on its own motion or on petition. A petition to stay may be filed in advance of the petition for reconsideration and shall be filed within 10 days of service of the action. No reply need be filed. However, if a party elects to file a reply, it must reach the Board no later than 16 days after service of the action. In all proceedings, the action, if not stayed, will become effective 30 days after it is served, unless the Board provides for the action to become effective at a different date. On the day the action is served parties may initiate judicial review.
A person at any time may file a petition to reopen any administratively final action of the Board pursuant to the requirements of § 1115.3 (c) and (d) of this part. A petition to reopen must state in detail the respects in which the proceeding involves material error, new evidence, or substantially changed circumstances and must include a request that the Board make such a determination.
(a) A party may petition for a stay of an action pending a request for judicial review, for extension of the compliance date, or for modification of the date the terms of the decision take effect. The reasons for the desired relief must be stated in the petition, and the petition must be filed not less than 10 days prior to the date the terms of the action take effect. No reply need be filed. If a party elects to file a reply, the reply must reach the Board no later than 5 days after the petition is filed.
(b) When the terms of a Board action take effect on less than 15 days' notice, a petition for stay pending a request for judicial review must be filed prior to the institution of court action and as close to the service date as practicable. No reply need be filed. Where time permits, a party may elect to file a reply.
(c) A petition or reply must not exceed 10 pages in length.
These rules do not relieve the requirement that a party exhaust its administrative remedies before going to court. Any action appealable as of right must be timely appealed. If an appeal, discretionary appeal, or petition seeking reopening is filed under § 1115.2 or § 1115.3 of this part, before or after a petition seeking judicial review is filed with the courts, the Board will act upon the appeal or petition after advising the court of its pendency unless action might interfere with the court's jurisdiction.
Petitions for judicial review of final agency orders may be served on the Board pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 2112(a) and be addressed to “General Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, Surface Transportation Board, Washington, DC 20423.”
An appeal of right to the Board is permitted. The appeal must be filed within 20 days upon the Board of a final arbitration decision, unless a later date is authorized by the Board, and is subject to the page limitations of § 1115.2(d). For arbitrations authorized under part 1108 of this chapter, the Board's standard of review of arbitration decisions will be narrow, and relief will only be granted on grounds that the decision is inconsistent with sound principles of rail regulation economics, a clear abuse of arbitral authority or discretion occurred, the decision directly contravenes statutory authority, or the award limitation was violated. For labor arbitration decisions, the Board's standard of review is set forth in Chicago and North Western Transportation Company - Abandonment - near Dubuque & Oelwein, Iowa, 3 I.C.C.2d 729 (1987), aff'd sub nom. International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers v. Interstate Commerce Commission, 862 F.2d 330 (D.C. Cir. 1988). The timely filing of a petition will not automatically stay the effect of the arbitration decision. A stay may be requested under § 1115.3(f).
(a) Rulings of Board employees, including administrative law judges, may be appealed prior to service of the initial decision only if:
(1) The ruling denies or terminates any person's participation;
(2) The ruling grants a request for the inspection of documents not ordinarily available for public inspection;
(3) The ruling overrules an objection based on privilege, the result of which ruling is to require the presentation of testimony or documents; or
(4) The ruling may result in substantial irreparable harm, substantial detriment to the public interest, or undue prejudice to a party.
(b) In stand-alone cost complaints or in cases filed under the simplified standards, any interlocutory appeal of a ruling shall be filed with the Board within three (3) business days of the ruling. Replies to any interlocutory appeal shall be filed with the Board within three (3) business days after the filing of any such appeal. In all other cases, interlocutory appeals shall be filed with the Board within seven (7) calendar days of the ruling and replies to interlocutory appeals shall be filed with Board within seven (7) calendar days after the filing of any such appeal as computed under 49 CFR 1104.7.