39 CFR 953.4 - Service of notice; Reply; Motion for summary judgment.

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§ 953.4 Filing, docketing and serving documents; service of notice; reply; motion for summary judgment.

(a) Filing. Unless the presiding officer permits otherwise, all documents must be filed using the electronic filing system. Documents submitted using the electronic filing system are considered filed as of the date/time (Eastern Time) reflected in the system. Documents mailed to the Recorder are considered filed on the date mailed as evidenced by a United States Postal Service postmark. Filings by any other means are considered filed upon receipt by the Recorder of a complete copy of the filing during normal business hours. Normal business hours are between 8:45 a.m. and 4:45 p.m. (Eastern Time), Monday through Friday except holidays. If both parties are participating in the electronic filing system, separate service upon the opposing party is not required. Otherwise, documents shall be served personally or by mail on the opposing party, noting on the document filed, or on the transmitting letter, that a copy has been so furnished.

(b) Service of notice.

(1) Upon receiving the appeal, the Recorder shall issue a notice specifying that the Postal Service General Counsel's or Chief Postal Inspector or his or her designee's reply shall be filed within 15 days of receipt of the notice.

(2) The Recorder shall promptly serve this notice on the parties as follows:

(i) The notice, with a copy of the appeal, shall be sent to the General Counsel or the Chief Postal Inspector or his or her designee.

(ii) When the appellant's address is within the United States, the notice, with a copy of the appeal, shall be sent to the postmaster at the office that delivers mail to the appellant's address. The postmaster shall be instructed that, acting personally or through a supervisory employee or a postal inspector, he or she is to serve these documents on the appellant. If the appellant cannot be found within 3 days, the postmaster shall send these documents to the appellant by ordinary mail and forward a statement to the Recorder that is signed by the delivering employee and that specifies the time and place of delivery.

(iii) When the appellant's address is outside the United States, the notice, with a copy of the appeal, shall be sent to the appellant by registered mail, return receipt requested. A written statement by the Recorder, noting the time and place of mailing, shall be accepted as proof of service in the event a signed and dated return receipt is not received.

(c) Reply. The General Counsel, the Chief Postal Inspector, or that officer's designee shall file a reply within the aforementioned 15-day period or any period granted by the presiding officer for good cause shown. If the reply so filed fails to address any additional allegation in the appeal, that allegation shall be deemed admitted.

(d) Motion for summary judgment. Upon motion of the General Counsel, the Chief Postal Inspector, that officer's designee, or the appellant, or on the presiding officer's own initiative, the presiding officer may find that the appeal and answer present no genuine and material issues of fact requiring an evidentiary hearing, and thereupon may render an initial decision upholding or reversing the determination or ruling. The initial decision shall become the final Agency decision if a timely appeal is not taken.

[81 FR 40192, June 21, 2016]

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