30 CFR § 773.27 - Burden of proof for ownership or control challenges.

§ 773.27 Burden of proof for ownership or control challenges.

This section applies to you if you challenge an ownership or control listing or finding.

(a) When you challenge a listing of ownership or control, or a finding of ownership or control made under § 774.11(g) of this subchapter, you must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that you either -

(1) Do not own or control the entire surface coal mining operation or relevant portion or aspect thereof; or

(2) Did not own or control the entire surface coal mining operation or relevant portion or aspect thereof during the relevant time period.

(b) In meeting your burden of proof, you must present reliable, credible, and substantial evidence and any explanatory materials to the regulatory authority. The materials presented in connection with your challenge will become part of the permit file, an investigation file, or another public file. If you request, we will hold as confidential any information you submit under this paragraph which is not required to be made available to the public under § 842.16 of this chapter (when OSM is the regulatory authority) or under § 840.14 of this chapter (when a State is the regulatory authority).

(c) Materials you may submit in response to the requirements of paragraph (b) of this section include, but are not limited to -

(1) Notarized affidavits containing specific facts concerning the duties that you performed for the relevant operation, the beginning and ending dates of your ownership or control of the operation, and the nature and details of any transaction creating or severing your ownership or control of the operation.

(2) Certified copies of corporate minutes, stock ledgers, contracts, purchase and sale agreements, leases, correspondence, or other relevant company records.

(3) Certified copies of documents filed with or issued by any State, municipal, or Federal governmental agency.

(4) An opinion of counsel, when supported by -

(i) Evidentiary materials;

(ii) A statement by counsel that he or she is qualified to render the opinion; and

(iii) A statement that counsel has personally and diligently investigated the facts of the matter.

[65 FR 79666, Dec. 19, 2000, as amended at 72 FR 68030, Dec. 3, 2007]