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Public Involvement in Hearings

The NRC conducts hearings on disputed matters involved in the licensing of nuclear reactors, nuclear materials, and nuclear materials facilities. Hearings are also available to contest civil penalties for infractions of NRC regulations or staff orders directing that some action be taken. The NRC regulations that govern the hearing process are in Rules of Practice for Domestic Licensing Proceedings and Issuance of Orders (10 CFR Part 2).

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Who Can Participate in a Hearing

Individuals or entities whose interests are affected by an NRC licensing or enforcement action may participate in hearings.

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How to Learn About Opportunities for Hearings

Licensing Actions Involving Nuclear Reactors

When NRC licensing actions involve nuclear reactors, a "Notice of Opportunity for Hearing" will be published in the Federal Register and will also be available at Hearing Opportunities and License Applications. Hearing requests and intervention petitions must be filed within 60 days of the date of the Federal Register publication of the Notice of Opportunity for Hearing.

Licensing Actions Involving Nuclear Materials or Nuclear Material Facilities

When NRC licensing actions involve nuclear materials or nuclear material facilities, frequently notices are not published in the Federal Register. However, information on opportunities for hearing for major licensing and regulatory actions involving nuclear materials or nuclear material facilities will be available at Hearing Opportunities and License Applications.

Deadline for Filing a Petition or Hearing Request

If a Federal Register notice of an opportunity for hearing is published, hearing requests and intervention petitions ordinarily must be filed within 60 days of the date of Federal Register publication of the "Notice of Opportunity for Hearing." If a Federal Register notice of opportunity for hearing is not published, hearing requests and intervention petitions ordinarily must be filed within 60 days of either the date that notice is provided at Hearing Opportunities and License Applications, or within 60 days after the requestor receives actual notice of a pending application, but not more than 60 days after the NRC takes final action on the application.

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Types of Participation

There are three ways to participate in the NRC hearing process. An eligible individual or entity can participate by

  • requesting intervention and a hearing
  • requesting an opportunity to make an oral limited appearance
  • submitting a written limited appearance statement

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How to Participate

To be granted a hearing on a concern regarding a domestic licensing or enforcement action, you must demonstrate that you will be affected by the action and request a hearing as required by 10 CFR Part 2. To comply with this regulation, you file a petition to intervene in the hearing within the period specified in NRC's notice in the Federal Register of the licensing or enforcement action. See the following sections to learn more about participating in a hearing:

  • 10 CFR 2.309 - Hearing requests, petitions to intervene, requirements for standing, and contentions
  • 10 CFR 2.303 - Docket
  • 10 CFR Part 2 - Rules of Practice for Domestic Licensing Proceedings and Issuance of Orders

To learn more about the NRC hearing process, see Adjudication (Hearings).

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Page Last Reviewed/Updated Tuesday, July 02, 2013