Review of Administrative Decisions Law and Legal Definition

Review of administrative decisions refers to a method where courts review decisions made by the administrative agencies authorized to enforce legislative mandates. Any potential party affected by the decision of an administrative agency can petition for a review. However, a court that reviews decision of an administrative agency gives a decision most favorable to the agency. If the agency’s decision is reasonable according to the evidence provided or if the evidence supports the decision, then the court will confirm the decision of the agency. An Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) is an official who presides at an administrative hearing to resolve disputes between a government agency and someone affected by a decision or action of that agency.

Generally, decisions made by an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) can be reviewed by the filing of a request for review. When an ALJ renders a decision called an administrative order, it may be reviewed by either a higher level within the agency or by a court. A person denied claim by an ALJ must "exhaust his/her administrative remedies" (take every step, including appeals) with the agency and its system before the administrative ruling may be appealed by a lawsuit in court. Parties can petition to the circuit court if there is an order by the agency that is not final and which decides rights and liabilities; which has legal consequences that follow immediately after the order; and waiting for a final decision which might result in an irreparable harm, damage or loss.

A person who files a petition against the agency decision is called the petitioner. A petitioner has to file a petition within 30 days after the agency decision, the date agency sent notice of its decision or date when the notice of agency decision was received whichever is earlier. Petitions can be filed in a circuit court for the county where the petitioner resides or carries on his business. Filing fees are waived by the court for people who are unable to pay. At the time of filing, advance filing fees must be paid unless it is an appeal from certain specific departments.