Video Hearings

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Committee: 
Video Hearings in stage 8. Implementation

Project Stages:

1. Gather ideas - Completed
2. Select ideas - Completed
3. Council approval - Completed
4. Picking a researcher - Completed
5. Committee consideration - Completed
6. Back to the council - Completed
7. Consideration by the full conference - Completed
8. Implementation - Current
Stage:  
8. Implementation

Contacts

Implementation Contact
202.480.2098
folorunnipa@acus.gov
Committee Chair
Retired (Former Chief Judge of the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Administrative Law Judges)
Staff Counsel
202.480.2097
awilliams@acus.gov

At its Plenary Session on June 16-17, 2011, the Administrative Conference of the United States adopted Recommendation 2011-4, regarding the use of video hearings by federal government agencies with high volume cases loads as a means of reducing caseload backlog and conducting more efficient adjudication. This recommendation is the result of the public, consensus-driven work of the Committee on Adjudication of the Assembly of the Conference.  The Conference previously posted drafts of the report and recommendation and invited public comment.

Project Background: In the past 10 years, there has been an increase in the use of video teleconferencing by federal agencies with high volume case loads. Certain federal agencies have used video teleconferencing to conduct adjudications and some applaud the use of video conferencing because it offers potential efficiency benefits. Critics, however, have suggested that hearings conducted by video may hamper communication and credibility determinations.

Project Details: The Administrative Conference conducted an in-house study examining the use of video hearings by federal government agencies with high volume cases loads as a means of reducing caseload backlog and conducting more efficient adjudication. Phase one of the study examined the use of video hearings by agencies who have used them consistently and over a period of time. Phase two of the study utilized the information learned from phase one to make recommendations for the use of video hearings at other federal agencies with high volume caseloads who may benefit from the use of such technology to improve efficiency, save costs and reduce caseload backlog.  The research conducted during the study produced a report which was considered by the Committee on Adjudication and which can be found below.

Details of the Committee Process

The Committee on Adjudication held two meetings in March and April 2011 to discuss the project and decide upon a draft recommendation.  Please see the links below for the documents considered by the Committee on Adjudication during those meetings.

Final Recommendation

Recommendation 2011-4, “Agency Use of Video Hearings: Best Practices and Possibilities for Expansion,” encourages agencies, especially those with a high volume of cases, to consider the use of video teleconferencing technology for hearings and other administrative proceedings. The recommendation sets forth factors agencies should consider when deciding whether to use video teleconferencing and best practices for...

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