Course Catalog

Maryland State and County Administrative Law (3)

Administrative agencies of the executive branch of Maryland state and local governments regulate many facets of everyday life. This course will acquaint students with those administrative agencies, their responsibilities, their methods of operation, the statutes and/or ordinances which govern them, their operational rules and regulations, hearing procedures, and the nature of judicial review where appropriate. Among the everyday aspects of life which are impacted by these administrative agencies are, for example: Health and Mental Hygieneís licensing and regulation of health professionals and health care facilities; Transportationís issuance of driverís licenses, restriction of weight limits on Maryland roads, construction of roads and bridges and regulation of motor vehicle fuel; Educationís oversight of what is taught in our schools, who has the right to teach, and where schools can be built. County administrative law controls what can be built and where it can be built. Zoning law is complicated and becomes more so when it becomes a part of the land development process. County administrative agencies regulate permits to operate a business, and employee grievances and their entitlement to pensions and disability benefits. These and other examples demonstrate that it is almost impossible to live a day without coming into contact with some Maryland or county agency rule or regulation that governs what we do and how we do it that day. General history of the development of administrative law will be examined as part of this course. Enabling statutes and ordinances to allow administrative regulation will be traced and discussed from their initial limitations to the great power and authority exercised in 2005. Emphasis will be placed on the ability of an agency to enact regulations, the growth of COMAR (Code of Maryland Regulations) and the Maryland Declaratory Judgment Act that is regularly used to challenge the validity of regulations. Who has standing and who does not is a very difficult field of law that needs much attention. Authority is growing so as to allow administrative agencies to conduct investigations of both a criminal and civil nature. Legal difficulties often occur when an administrative agency performs combinations of an investigatory, prosecutorial and adjudicatory function. Due process considerations and how the U.S. Constitution and the Maryland Constitution frame this area of multiple function authority will be discussed. Conducting administrative hearings to perform a regulatory, rule making or quasi-judicial function and the constitutional and statutory rules that must be followed in this process will be discussed. How rules of evidence in administrative hearings differ from the Maryland Rules of Evidence is a matter of much debate and concern. Judicial review of administrative hearings is limited. However, the requirement that agencies be specific as to what they decide, how a decision is reached, and the basis of a decision is required before judicial review will occur. Deference must be given by the judiciary to agency findings of fact and conclusions of law. Marylandís fairly new use of administrative law judges (ALJ) on a state level, and agency review of the decision by an ALJ has become more than a little complicated by appellate court decisions. Finally, how appellate court review in Annapolis resembles the review made by circuit court judges will be examined. The number of attorneys involved in the practice of Maryland State and County administrative law is enormous. The Maryland State Bar Association has a very dedicated and effective Administrative Law Section. MICPEL (Maryland Institute of Continuing Professional Education of Lawyers) and Judicial Institute programs are regularly presented on administrative law. The area of law is growing as the scope of agency involvement in our day to day living increases year by year. The practice of law before administrative agencies is challenging, especially so given the great discretion of administrative agencies in formulating regulations and adjudicating disputes. Where due process begins and ends is a subject of much debate and changing forces. No area of civil law is more interesting or important to the day to day lives of Marylandís citizens.

Current & Previous Instructors:

This course is not currently scheduled.
Last offered Spring 2015.

Key to Codes in Course Descriptions
P: Prerequisite
C: Prerequisite or Concurrent Requirement
R: Recommended Prior or Concurrent Course

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500 W. Baltimore Street, Baltimore, MD 21201-1786 PHONE: (410) 706-7214 FAX: (410) 706-4045 / TDD: (410) 706-7714

Admissions: PHONE: (410) 706-3492 FAX: (410) 706-1793

Copyright © 2018, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. All Rights Reserved