Administrative Procedures Act

ORS 183.417
Procedure in contested case hearing


In a contested case proceeding, the parties may elect to be represented by counsel and to respond and present evidence and argument on all issues properly before the presiding officer in the proceeding.


Agencies may adopt rules of procedure governing participation in contested case proceedings by persons appearing as limited parties.


(a) Unless prohibited by law, informal disposition may be made of any contested case by stipulation, agreed settlement, consent order or default. Informal settlement may be made in license revocation proceedings by written agreement of the parties and the agency consenting to a suspension, fine or other form of intermediate sanction.


Any informal disposition of a contested case, other than an informal disposition by default, must be in writing and signed by the party or parties to the contested case. The agency shall incorporate that disposition into a final order. An order under this paragraph is not subject to ORS 183.470 (Orders in contested cases). The agency shall deliver or mail a copy of the order to each party and to the attorney of record if the party is represented. An order that incorporates the informal disposition is a final order in a contested case, but is not subject to judicial review. A party may petition the agency to set aside a final order that incorporates the informal disposition on the ground that the informal disposition was obtained by fraud or duress.


An order adverse to a party may be issued upon default only if a prima facie case is made on the record. The record on a default order includes all materials submitted by the party. The record on a default order may be made at the time of issuance of the order. If the record on the default order consists solely of an application and other materials submitted by the party, the agency shall so note in the order.


At the commencement of a contested case hearing, the officer presiding at the hearing shall explain the issues involved in the hearing and the matters that the parties must either prove or disprove.


Testimony at a contested case hearing shall be taken upon oath or affirmation of the witness. The officer presiding at the hearing shall administer oaths or affirmations to witnesses.


The officer presiding at the hearing shall place on the record a statement of the substance of any written or oral ex parte communication on a fact in issue made to the officer during the pendency of the proceeding and notify the parties of the communication and of their right to rebut the communication. If an ex parte communication is made to an administrative law judge assigned from the Office of Administrative Hearings established under ORS 183.605 (Office of Administrative Hearings), the administrative law judge must comply with ORS 183.685 (Ex parte communications).


The officer presiding at the hearing shall ensure that the record developed at the hearing shows a full and fair inquiry into the facts necessary for consideration of all issues properly before the presiding officer in the case and the correct application of the law to those facts.


The record in a contested case shall include:


All pleadings, motions and intermediate rulings.


Evidence received or considered.




A statement of matters officially noticed.


Questions and offers of proof, objections and rulings thereon.


A statement of any ex parte communication that must be disclosed under subsection (7) of this section and that was made to the officer presiding at the hearing.


Proposed findings and exceptions.


Any proposed, intermediate or final order prepared by the agency or an administrative law judge.


A verbatim oral, written or mechanical record shall be made of all motions, rulings and testimony in a contested case proceeding. The record need not be transcribed unless requested for purposes of rehearing or court review. The agency may charge the party requesting transcription the cost of a copy of transcription, unless the party files an appropriate affidavit of indigency. Upon petition, a court having jurisdiction to review under ORS 183.480 (Judicial review of agency orders) may reduce or eliminate the charge upon finding that it is equitable to do so, or that matters of general interest would be determined by review of the order of the agency. [2007 c.288 §4]
§§ 183.415 to 183.470

Law Review Citations

54 OLR 387 (1975)

§§ 183.413 to 183.470

Law Review Citations

70 OLR 176 (1991)

§§ 183.310 to 183.550

See annotations under ORS chapter 183.

Chapter 183

Notes of Decisions

A legislative delegation of power in terms as broad as those used in [former] ORS 471.295 (1) places upon the administrative agency a responsibility to establish standards by which the law is to be applied. Sun Ray Drive-in Dairy, Inc. v. Ore. Liquor Control Comm., 16 Or App 63, 517 P2d 289 (1973)

Administrative regulation providing that failure to perform responsibilities adequately was a ground for employee's dismissal. Palen v. State Bd. of Higher Educ., 18 Or App 442, 525 P2d 1047 (1974), Sup Ct review denied

Where it was determined that agency invalidly terminated substantive policy, trial court did not have authority to order agency to resume policy in absence of validly adopted agency rule. Burke v. Children's Services Division, 39 Or App 819, 593 P2d 1262 (1979), aff'd 288 Or 533, 607 P2d 141 (1980)

"Trending factors" published by the Department of Revenue and used to appraise property for purposes of property taxation are not "rules" within the meaning of this chapter. Borden Inc. v. Dept. of Rev., 286 Or 567, 595 P2d 1372 (1979)

Appellate court may review proceeding meeting definition of contested case whether or not proceeding was formal administrative hearing. Patton v. State Bd. of Higher Ed., 293 Or 363, 647 P2d 931 (1982)

Circuit court could not entertain action for declaratory judgment directed at PERS, because PERS is subject to APA, which provides exclusive method for review of its actions. FOPPO v. County of Marion, 93 Or App 93, 760 P2d 1353 (1988), Sup Ct review denied

Board of Education approval of textbook for use in state public schools was not "rule," but was "order in other than contested case," and jurisdiction for judicial review is in circuit court. Oregon Env. Council v. Oregon State Bd. of Ed., 307 Or 30, 761 P2d 1322 (1988)

Preponderance of evidence standard applies where initial license application is denied based on willful fraud. Sobel v. Board of Pharmacy, 130 Or App 374, 882 P2d 606 (1994), Sup Ct review denied

Completed Citations

Wright v. Bateson, 5 Or App 628, 485 P2d 641 (1971), Sup Ct review denied, cert. denied, 405 US 930 (1972)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

State Speed Control Board subject to Administrative Procedures Act, (1974) Vol 36, p 1024; proxy voting at board meeting, (1974) Vol 36, p 1064; student conduct proceedings as "contested cases," (1976) Vol 37, p 1461; rulemaking authority of Statewide Health Coordinating Council and of Certificate of Need Appeals Board, (1977) Vol 38, p 1229; Oregon Medical Insurance Pool is fundamentally private-sector body, under virtually total private control, created by state to fulfill public purpose and is not state agency or public body subject to Administrative Procedures Act (APA), (1989) Vol 46, p 155

Law Review Citations

51 OLR 245 (1971); 53 OLR 364, 365 (1974); 10 WLJ 373, 420 (1974); 13 WLJ 499, 517, 525, 537 (1977); 57 OLR 334 (1978); 22 WLR 355 (1986); 36 WLR 219 (2000)


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Jun. 26, 2021