Model Adjudication Rules Working Group

Project Contacts


The Office of the Chairman of the Administrative Conference of the United States established a working group—the Model Adjudication Rules Working Group—to review and revise the Conference’s Model Adjudication Rules. Released in 1993 by a similar working group of the Conference, the Model Adjudication Rules were designed for use by federal agencies to amend or develop their procedural rules for hearings conducted under the Administrative Procedure Act. The original Model Adjudication Rules appear under “Project Documents” below. Numerous agencies have relied on the Model Rules to improve existing adjudicative schemes, and newer agencies, like the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, have relied on them to design new procedures. Significant changes in adjudicative practices and procedures since 1993—including use of electronic case management and video hearings—necessitate a careful review and revision of the Model Adjudication Rules. In reviewing and revising the Model Rules, the Working Group relied on the Conference’s extensive empirical research of adjudicative practices reflected in the Federal Administrative Adjudication Database, amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure since 1993, and input from agency officials, academics, practitioners, and other stakeholders.

The Office of the Chairman established this working group under the provisions of the Administrative Conference Act. The primary purpose of the Act is to:

Provide suitable arrangements through which Federal agencies, assisted by outside experts, may cooperatively study mutual problems, exchange information, and develop recommendations for action by proper authorities to the end that private rights may be fully protected and regulatory activities and other Federal responsibilities may be carried out expeditiously in the public interest. [5 U.S.C. § 591(1)]

To carry out the purposes of the Act, the Chairman of the Conference has the authority to:

  • Make inquiries into matters important for Conference consideration [5 U.S.C. § 595(c)(1)]

  • Organize and direct studies using experts and consultants [5 U.S.C. § 595(c)(10)]

  • Accept voluntary and uncompensated services [5 U.S.C. § 595(c)(13)]

In accordance with the Conference’s commitment to public participation, transparency, and openness, each meeting was open to the public, relevant documents (e.g., meeting notices, public comments, agendas, reports) were made available to the public, and the revised Rules were noticed in the Federal Register and on the Conference’s website.

The members of the Working Group are listed below and in an associated project document. 

Working Group Members and Associated Individuals

Reporter: Kent H. Barnett, Associate Professor of Law, University of Georgia School of Law

Staff Counsel: Daniel J. Sheffner, Attorney Advisor, Administrative Conference of the United States


  • Thomas P. McCarthy (Chair), Administrative Law Judge, Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission

  • Reeve T. Bull, Research Director, Administrative Conference of the United States

  • John R. Coleman, Deputy General Counsel for Litigation and Oversight, Legal Division, Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (Alternate: Jack Barrett, Senior Litigation Counsel)

  • David F. Engstrom, Professor of Law, Stanford Law School

  • Jeffrey R. Freund, Senior Counsel, Bredhoff & Kaiser, PLLC

  • Nancy J. Griswold, Chief Administrative Law Judge, Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals, Department of Health and Human Services (Alternate: Brian J. Haring, Deputy Chief Administrative Law Judge)

  • John S. Irving, Of Counsel, Kirkland & Ellis

  • Emery G. Lee, Senior Research Associate, Federal Judicial Center

  • Thomasina V. Rogers, Chairman (Retired), Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission

  • Jean C. King, General Counsel, Executive Office for Immigration Review, Department of Justice (Alternate: Patricia M. Allen, Associate General Counsel)

  • David C. Shonka, Principal Deputy General Counsel (Retired), Federal Trade Commission (Alternate: Kenny A. Wright, Attorney)

  • Matthew L. Wiener, Vice Chair and Executive Director, Administrative Conference of the United States