Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Energy
Department of Energy
Board of Coal Mining Examiners Certification Requirements [4 VAC 25 ‑ 20]
Action is Exempt from Article 2 of the Administrative Process Act
Clarification of right to representation in formal hearings before the Board
Action 2281
General Information
Action Summary The Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy (DMME) is amending its Board of Coal Mining Examiners (BCME) regulation to eliminate a provision stating that a party may be represented in formal hearings before the Board by an individual of their choice, whether or not that individual is an attorney. The amendment specifies instead that each party has the right to be represented by legal counsel in formal hearings before the Board. This change is necessary to comply with UPL Opinion No. 209 of the Supreme Court of Virginia, dated February 28, 2006, which states that Virginia Unauthorized Practice of Law Rule 1-101(A) applies to representation before a board of the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy. The rule states that a non-lawyer shall not represent another before a tribunal. A DMME board meets the definition of “tribunal” “…when it determines the rights and obligations of parties to proceedings before it, as opposed to promulgating rules and regulations of general applicability.” The amendment makes allowable representation before the BCME consistent with Rule 1-101(A), and also brings the affected regulation into compliance with Virginia Supreme Court Rule 1A: 4, as amended November 28, 2006, regarding out-of-state lawyers. The agency has no discretion in enacting this regulatory change.
Chapters Affected Only affects this chapter.
Executive Branch Review This Action is exempt from Article 2 of the Administrative Process Act. The normal executive branch review process is not required. As such, it can be submitted directly for publication and is effective upon publication.
Exempt Citation: § 2.2-4006 of the Virginia Administrative Process Act
RIS Project No project yet assigned to this action
New Periodic Review This action will not be used to conduct a new periodic review.
Stages associated with this regulatory action.
Stage ID Stage Type Status
3996 Final Stage complete. This regulation became effective on 04/04/2007.
Contact Information
Name / Title: David Spears  / Program Analyst
Address: Ninth Street Office Building, 8th Floor
202 N. Ninth Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3402
Email Address:
Phone: (804)692-3212    FAX: (804)692-3237    TDD: (800)828-1120