Administrative Law

Overview

Our lawyers are effective and authoritative advocates for clients in administrative proceedings before state governmental agencies. With our deep roots in the local community, knowledge of public processes, and dispute resolution skills, we understand how to resolve controversies efficiently on our clients’ behalf. While Delaware is recognized for its supportive business environment, state administrative authorities that oversee banking, gaming, insurance, manufacturing, public utilities, and a wide range of other business sectors move aggressively to enforce and apply the law in their areas of responsibility. When controversies arise, we are effective in advocating on behalf of clients before the senior leaders and executive staffs of agencies such as: the Office of the Delaware State Bank Commissioner; , the Delaware Insurance Commissioner; , the Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control; , the Delaware Division of Revenue; , the Delaware Securities Commissioner; , the Delaware Department of Transportation; , and the Delaware Department of Agriculture.

Richards Layton lawyers are effective and authoritative advocates for our clients in administrative proceedings before state governmental agencies. Although Delaware is recognized for its supportive business environment, state administrative authorities that oversee banking, gaming, insurance, manufacturing, public utilities and a wide range of other business sectors move aggressively to enforce and apply the law in their areas of responsibility.

When controversies arise, we are effective in advocating on behalf of clients before the senior leaders and executive staffs of agencies such as:

  • the Office of the Delaware State Bank Commissioner
  • the Delaware Insurance Commissioner
  • the Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control
  • the Delaware Division of Revenue
  • the Delaware Securities Commissioner
  • the Delaware Department of Transportation
  • the Delaware Department of Agriculture.

Administrative Appeals
Our firm handles appeals from administrative decisions before administrative appeals boards and in the Delaware state courts. We also have experience with original actions against governmental agencies for injunctions or declaratory judgments—up to and including appeals to the Delaware Supreme Court.

We have considerable experience in drafting legislative changes to administrative statutes and working with committees of the Delaware General Assembly to implement revisions to the law. No Delaware law firm surpasses Richards Layton’s ability to resolve disputes and level the administrative law playing field for our clients.

Utility Focus
Richards Layton handles more administrative controversies involving the Delaware Public Service Commission than any other Delaware law firm. Whether in public hearings before the commissioners and their staff or in direct meetings and negotiations, we address and resolve client concerns regarding rate changes, rulemaking and customer service complaints. Public Service Commission proceedings involve extensive documentation and can often require a year or more to resolve. Our lawyers have the in-depth knowledge necessary to resolve disputes in this forum.

Business Interests
In addition to the Public Service Commission, Richards Layton has an established presence before the key administrative bodies overseeing all of Delaware’s business activities. Whether the issue involves companies chartered in the state or national companies with Delaware operations, these are among our most significant activities.

  • When taxing authorities raise concerns, we represent clients before the Delaware Division of Revenue and the Delaware Tax Appeal Board.
  • We regularly advise nationally and state chartered financial institutions involved in regulatory and operating disputes relating to their charters, mergers and acquisitions, and new financial products overseen by the Office of the Delaware State Bank Commissioner. Although controversies over bank examinations and other regulatory matters are not common in Delaware, we effectively defend clients when concerns do arise.
  • Insurance companies domiciled in Delaware rely on Richards Layton to resolve issues involving investments, change of control, agency formation and regulatory disputes before the Delaware Insurance Commissioner.
  • We handle numerous environmental permit appeals and regularly defend clients in enforcement actions involving the Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control and the Delaware Environmental Appeals Board.
  • Clients in the gaming sector have sought Richards Layton’s help in matters pending before Delaware’s gaming and racing authorities.

In addition to these major agencies, our firm handles administrative matters for individual and business clients on a daily basis before a host of other state regulatory agencies, boards and commissions.

Governmental Client Representation
Although representing private sector clients in administrative controversies is our primary focus, our lawyers also have handled complex administrative controversies on behalf of governmental entities. For example, we have represented the Delaware Insurance Commissioner in Court of Chancery litigation involving the Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau.

We represent the City of Wilmington in a variety of litigation and nonlitigation contexts, and have represented other municipalities and county officials in numerous matters. We have also represented several county and municipal governments in appeals of environmental regulations.

Federal Agency Experience
Richards Layton attorneys are also advocates for our clients before a variety of federal administrative agencies. For example, our lawyers represent employers in administrative actions before the Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, National Labor Relations Board and other federal agencies overseeing employment law controversies. We also represent a wide range of clients with EPA, OSHA and other federal administrative agency issues.

 

Publications

  • "Delaware Laws & Programs Affecting Business - 2011 Edition," July 2011   View >
  • "Amendments to the General Corporation Law of the State of Delaware," February 23, 2009   View >