(a) Informal consultation is an optional process that includes all discussions, correspondence, etc., between the Service and the Federal agency or the designated non-Federal representative, designed to assist the Federal agency in determining whether formal consultation or a conference is required.
(b) During informal consultation, the Service may suggest modifications to the action that the Federal agency and any applicant could implement to avoid the likelihood of adverse effects to listed species or critical habitat.
(c) If during informal consultation it is determined by the Federal agency, with the written concurrence of the Service, that the action is not likely to adversely affect listed species or critical habitat, the consultation process is terminated, and no further action is necessary.
(1) A written request for concurrence with a Federal agency's not likely to adversely affect determination shall include information similar to the types of information described for formal consultation at § 402.14(c)(1) sufficient for the Service to determine if it concurs.
(2) Upon receipt of a written request consistent with paragraph (c)(1) of this section, the Service shall provide written concurrence or non-concurrence with the Federal agency's determination within 60 days. The 60-day timeframe may be extended upon mutual consent of the Service, the Federal agency, and the applicant (if involved), but shall not exceed 120 days total from the date of receipt of the Federal agency's written request consistent with paragraph (c)(1) of this section.