This series highlights selected ACUS projects. To learn more about ongoing projects, subscribe to our mailing list.
78th Plenary Session
ACUS will host its 78th Plenary Session on December 15, 2022, at which the Assembly will consider the following three projects:
- Precedential Decision Making in Agency Adjudication
- Public Availability of Settlement Agreements in Agency Enforcement Proceedings
- Regulatory Enforcement Manuals
Members of the public are welcome to view the plenary proceedings via livestream on YouTube here.
ACUS-LSC Forum: Assisting Parties in Federal Administrative Adjudication
ACUS and the Legal Services Corporation are pleased to announce an upcoming public forum, Assisting Parties in Federal Administrative Adjudication. This forum, which will be held virtually over the next several months, will examine ways to improve support in programs in which parties are frequently self-represented.
The first panel, Expanding Access to Representation, took place on December 6 from 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. ET. This panel examined why many parties, especially members of historically underserved communities, do not have professional representation and addressed whether and how self-representation impacts procedural fairness, substantive outcomes, and administrative efficiency. Panelists, listed below, addressed potential strategies that public- and private-sector institutions can implement to expand access to representation in federal adjudication processes and challenges for implementing them.
- Nancy Griswold, Deputy Director, Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs, U.S. Department of Labor
- Deedee Peterson, Executive Director, Legal Action of Wisconsin, Inc.
- Richard Prebil, Supervising Attorney, Veterans Advocacy Project at Legal Aid of Southeastern Pennsylvania
- Ashley Tabaddor, Chief Counsel, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
- Jeremy Graboyes, Acting Research Director, ACUS (moderator)
Future panels will address ways to promote effective representation of parties by lawyers and nonlawyers and to expand services for self-represented parties. Dates will be announced at www.acus.gov/assisting-parties-in-adjudication.
ACUS Recommendation Results in Amendment to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure
In December 2016, the ACUS Assembly adopted Recommendation 2016-3, Special Procedural Rules for Social Security Litigation in District Court. This recommendation, informed by a comprehensive report by Professors Jonah Gelbach and David Marcus, encouraged the Judicial Conference of the United States to develop a uniform set of procedural rules for cases in which an individual sought district court review of a final administrative decision by the Commissioner of Social Security. The report identified widely differing district court procedures for these cases.
An amendment to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure establishing such supplemental rules for Social Security litigation took effect December 1, 2022.
During the four years following adoption of Recommendation 2016-3, the Judicial Conference’s Advisory Committee on Civil Rules drafted and refined the supplemental rules. During deliberations, District Court Judge Sara Lioi noted it was significant that the project began with a proposal by ACUS, bolstered by a thorough study by two leading scholars. The Supreme Court adopted the rules and transmitted them to Congress on April 11, 2022.
ACUS Welcomes New Attorney Advisor Jennifer Selin
Prior to joining ACUS, Dr. Selin was a professor at the universities of Illinois and Missouri and most recently served as co-director of the Carl Levin Center for Oversight and Democracy’s Washington, D.C., office. Her published research illustrates that the legal structure of the administrative state has important implications for the functioning of the American separation-of-powers system. Before embarking upon her academic career, Dr. Selin practiced administrative law and specialized in federal energy market regulation and alternative energy development, licensing, and regulation. A proud graduate of Lebanon Valley College, Dr. Selin earned her J.D. from Wake Forest University and her Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University.