Administrative Code

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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 1. Administration
Agency 45. Department of Law
Chapter 20. Regulations Regarding the Virginia Human Rights Act

1VAC45-20-110. Formal hearing.

A. When conciliation efforts fail or when the director determines that the conciliation process will not be in the best interest of the complainant or the Commonwealth, the director shall set the matter for formal hearing conducted in accordance with § 2.2-4020 of the Code of Virginia prior to dismissing the matter and issuing a notice of right to sue or refer the complaint to the appropriate federal agency for further processing.

B. If a matter is set for a formal hearing under subsection A of this section, the division shall mail a notice of the time and place of the hearing to the parties at least 20 business days before the date of the hearing.

C. All formal hearings shall be open to the public.

D. A hearing officer appointed by the division from a list obtained from the Supreme Court of Virginia shall preside over the hearing.

E. The hearing officer shall not be bound by statutory rules of evidence or technical rules of procedure.

F. Both the complainant and the respondent shall appear and be heard in person, but may be assisted by counsel or by an authorized representative.

G. All testimony shall be given under oath or affirmation.

H. The order of presentation shall be established by the hearing officer with the burden of proof being placed on the complainant.

I. Where any party fails to appear at a fact-finding conference or hearing conducted pursuant to this chapter, the division shall proceed in accordance with the provisions of § 2.2-4020.2 of the Code of Virginia.

J. Irrelevant, immaterial, and unduly repetitious evidence shall, at the discretion of the hearing officer, be excluded. The rules of privilege shall be given effect.

K. The hearing officer may accept relevant documents or other evidence into the record as exhibits. Documents to be submitted at the hearing by a party shall be distributed to the division and the other party no later than five business days prior to the hearing. Documents not submitted in accordance with this rule shall only be admitted when the hearing officer determines that just cause exists.

L. Before the hearing concludes, the parties shall be given an opportunity to present an oral closing argument of their cases and proposed findings and conclusions in accordance with the provisions of § 2.2-4020 of the Code of Virginia.

M. The hearing shall be recorded by an official reporter and one transcript shall be purchased by the division. After the division has received the transcript, the division's copy shall be made available for review within five business days upon request to the division during regular business hours.

Statutory Authority

§ 2.2-520 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Former 22VAC25-10-110 derived from VR402-01-02 § 11, eff. July 4, 1990; amended and renumbered, Virginia Register Volume 33, Issue 15, eff. May 5, 2017; amended, Virginia Register Volume 37, Issue 3, eff. October 28, 2020.

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