20 CFR 498.220 - Initial decision.
(a) The ALJ will issue an initial decision, based only on the record, which will contain findings of fact and conclusions of law.
(c) The ALJ will issue the initial decision to all parties within 60 days after the time for submission of post-hearing briefs or reply briefs, if permitted, has expired. The decision will be accompanied by a statement describing the right of any party to file a notice of appeal with the DAB and instructions for how to file such appeal. If the ALJ cannot issue an initial decision within the 60 days, the ALJ will notify the parties of the reason for the delay and will set a new deadline.
(d) Unless an appeal or request for extension pursuant to § 498.221(a) is filed with the DAB, the initial decision of the ALJ becomes final and binding on the parties 30 days after the ALJ serves the parties with a copy of the decision. If service is by mail, the date of service will be deemed to be five days from the date of mailing.