Facebook Twitter

STATE TO SIMPLIFY ANTI-BIAS RULES

SHARE STATE TO SIMPLIFY ANTI-BIAS RULES

In an attempt to simplify the processing of anti-discrimination cases, the State Industrial Commission has adopted a rule that eliminates 50 percent of the verbiage and makes it easier to understand, particularly for those who don't want an attorney and represent themselves.

Alan L. Hennebold, the commission's general counsel, said the old Utah Anti-Discrimination Division rules were overly complex and instead of providing a step-by-step explanation of the process for resolving charges of discrimination, they were bogged down in legal jargon and unnecessary detail.Although the new rule must go through the regular state rule-making process, here is what it provides:

- After a charge of discrimination has been investigated, the division director shall issue a determination and order. Or the director can refer the matter to an investigator for further investigation.

- A party dissatisfied with the director's determination and order may request a de novo (from the beginning) evidentiary hearing. The request must be in writing, state the party's reason for seeking review and must be received by the division within 30 days of the director signing the determination and order.

- Unless a timely request for a hearing is received by the division, the director's determination and order will be the commission's final order.

- If a timely request is received, the division will transmit the request to the commission's Adjudication Division for assignment to an administrative law judge. The ALJ will conduct a de novo hearing and issue an order that conforms to requirements of the Utah Administrative Procedures act.

- A party may request a commission review of the ALJ's order by complying with provisions of the Utah Administrative Procedures Act.

Hennebold said the new rule also eliminates a requirement that he screen requests for a hearing based on the presumption that new evidence will be presented. Screening of the requests may have violated someone's constitutional rights, he said.