42 CFR § 1008.31 - OIG fees for the cost of advisory opinions.
(a) Responsibility for fees. The requestor is responsible for paying a fee equal to the costs incurred by the Department in responding to the request for an advisory opinion.
(c) Calculation of costs: Prior to the issuance of the advisory opinion, the OIG will calculate the costs incurred by the Department in responding to the request. The calculation will include the costs of salaries and benefits payable to attorneys and others who have worked on the request in question, as well as administrative and supervisory support for such person. The OIG has the exclusive authority to determine the cost of responding to a request for an advisory opinion and such determination is not reviewable or waiveable.
(d) Agreement to pay all costs.
(1) By submitting the request for an advisory opinion, the requestor agrees, except as indicated in paragraph (d)(4) of this section, to pay all costs incurred by the OIG in responding to the request for an advisory opinion.
(2) In its request for an advisory opinion, the requestor may request a written estimate of the cost involved in processing the advisory opinion. Within 10 business days of receipt of the request, the OIG will notify in writing of such estimate. Such estimate will not be binding on the Department, and the actual cost to be paid may be higher or lower than estimated. The time period for issuing the advisory opinion will be tolled from the time the OIG notifies the requestor of the estimate until the OIG receives written confirmation from the requestor that the requestor wants the OIG to continue processing the request. Such notice may include a new or revised triggering dollar amount, as set forth in paragraph (d)(3) of this section.
(3) In its request for an advisory opinion, the requestor may designate a triggering dollar amount. If the OIG estimates that the costs of processing the advisory opinion request have reached, or are likely to exceed, the designated triggering dollar amount, the OIG will notify the requestor. The requestor may revise its designated triggering dollar amount in writing in its response to notification of a cost estimate in accordance with paragraph (d)(2) of this section.
(4) If the OIG notifies the requestor that the estimated cost of processing the request has reached or is likely to exceed the triggering dollar amount, the OIG will stop processing the request until such time as the requestor makes a written request for the OIG to continue processing the request. Any delay in the processing of the request for an advisory opinion attributable to these procedures will toll the time for issuance of an advisory opinion until the requestor asks the OIG to continue working on the request.
(5) If the requestor chooses not to pay for completion of an advisory opinion, or withdraws the request, the requestor is still obligated to pay for all costs incurred and identified by the OIG attributable to processing the request for an advisory opinion up to that point.
(6) If the costs incurred by the OIG in responding to the request are greater than the amount paid by the requestor, the OIG will, prior to the issuance of the advisory opinion, notify the requestor of any additional amount due. The OIG will not issue an advisory opinion until the full amount owed by the requestor has been paid. Once the requestor has paid the OIG the total amount due for the costs of processing the request, the OIG will issue the advisory opinion. The time period for issuing advisory opinions will be tolled from the time the OIG notifies the requestor of the amount owed until the time full payment is received.
(e) Fees for outside experts.
(1) In addition to the fees identified in this section, the requestor also must pay any required fees for expert opinions, if any, from outside sources, as described in § 1008.33.
(2) If the OIG determines that it is necessary to obtain expert advice to issue a requested advisory opinion, the OIG will notify the requestor of that fact and provide the identity of the appropriate expert and an estimate of the costs of the expert advice.