§ 26.63 - What rules govern group membership determinations?
(a)(1) If, after reviewing the signed notarized statement of membership in a presumptively disadvantaged group (see § 26.61(c)), you have a well founded reason to question the individual's claim of membership in that group, you must require the individual to present additional evidence that he or she is a member of the group.
(2) You must provide the individual a written explanation of your reasons for questioning his or her group membership and a written request for additional evidence as outlined in paragraph (b) of this section.
(3) In implementing this section, you must take special care to ensure that you do not impose a disproportionate burden on members of any particular designated group. Imposing a disproportionate burden on members of a particular group could violate § 26.7(b) and/or Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and 49 CFR part 21.
(b) In making such a determination, you must consider whether the person has held himself out to be a member of the group over a long period of time prior to application for certification and whether the person is regarded as a member of the group by the relevant community. You may require the applicant to produce appropriate documentation of group membership.
(1) If you determine that an individual claiming to be a member of a group presumed to be disadvantaged is not a member of a designated disadvantaged group, the individual must demonstrate social and economic disadvantage on an individual basis.
(2) Your decisions concerning membership in a designated group are subject to the certification appeals procedure of § 26.89.