61 FR 88, Jan. 2, 1996, unless otherwise noted.
(a) Purpose. The purpose of the Administrative Remedy Program is to allow an inmate to seek formal review of an issue relating to any aspect of his/her own confinement. An inmate may not submit a Request or Appeal on behalf of another inmate.
(b) Scope. This Program applies to all inmates in institutions operated by the Bureau of Prisons, to inmates designated to contract Community Corrections Centers (CCCs) under Bureau of Prisons responsibility, and to former inmates for issues that arose during their confinement. This Program does not apply to inmates confined in other non-federal facilities.
(c) Statutorily-mandated procedures. There are statutorily-mandated procedures in place for tort claims (28 CFR part 543, subpart C), Inmate Accident Compensation claims (28 CFR part 301), and Freedom of Information Act or Privacy Act requests (28 CFR part 513, subpart D). If an inmate raises an issue in a request or appeal that cannot be resolved through the Administrative Remedy Program, the Bureau will refer the inmate to the appropriate statutorily-mandated procedures.
[67 FR 50805, Aug. 6, 2002]
(a) The Community Corrections Manager (CCM), Warden, Regional Director, and General Counsel are responsible for the implementation and operation of the Administrative Remedy Program at the Community Corrections Center (CCC), institution, regional and Central Office levels, respectively, and shall:
(1) Establish procedures for receiving, recording, reviewing, investigating, and responding to Administrative Remedy Requests (Requests) or Appeals (Appeals) submitted by an inmate;
(2) Acknowledge receipt of a Request or Appeal by returning a receipt to the inmate;
(3) Conduct an investigation into each Request or Appeal;
(4) Respond to and sign all Requests or Appeals filed at their levels. At the regional level, signatory authority may be delegated to the Deputy Regional Director. At the Central Office level, signatory authority may be delegated to the National Inmate Appeals Administrator. Signatory authority extends to staff designated as acting in the capacities specified in this § 542.11, but may not be further delegated without the written approval of the General Counsel.
(b) Inmates have the responsibility to use this Program in good faith and in an honest and straightforward manner.
(a) Informal resolution. Except as provided in § 542.13(b), an inmate shall first present an issue of concern informally to staff, and staff shall attempt to informally resolve the issue before an inmate submits a Request for Administrative Remedy. Each Warden shall establish procedures to allow for the informal resolution of inmate complaints.
(b) Exceptions. Inmates in CCCs are not required to attempt informal resolution. An informal resolution attempt is not required prior to submission to the Regional or Central Office as provided for in § 542.14(d) of this part. An informal resolution attempt may be waived in individual cases at the Warden or institution Administrative Remedy Coordinator's discretion when the inmate demonstrates an acceptable reason for bypassing informal resolution.
(a) Submission. The deadline for completion of informal resolution and submission of a formal written Administrative Remedy Request, on the appropriate form (BP-9), is 20 calendar days following the date on which the basis for the Request occurred.
(b) Extension. Where the inmate demonstrates a valid reason for delay, an extension in filing time may be allowed. In general, valid reason for delay means a situation which prevented the inmate from submitting the request within the established time frame. Valid reasons for delay include the following: an extended period in-transit during which the inmate was separated from documents needed to prepare the Request or Appeal; an extended period of time during which the inmate was physically incapable of preparing a Request or Appeal; an unusually long period taken for informal resolution attempts; indication by an inmate, verified by staff, that a response to the inmate's request for copies of dispositions requested under § 542.19 of this part was delayed.
(1) The inmate shall obtain the appropriate form from CCC staff or institution staff (ordinarily, the correctional counselor).
(2) The inmate shall place a single complaint or a reasonable number of closely related issues on the form. If the inmate includes on a single form multiple unrelated issues, the submission shall be rejected and returned without response, and the inmate shall be advised to use a separate form for each unrelated issue. For DHO and UDC appeals, each separate incident report number must be appealed on a separate form.
(3) The inmate shall complete the form with all requested identifying information and shall state the complaint in the space provided on the form. If more space is needed, the inmate may use up to one letter-size (81/2” by 11”) continuation page. The inmate must provide an additional copy of any continuation page. The inmate must submit one copy of supporting exhibits. Exhibits will not be returned with the response. Because copies of exhibits must be filed for any appeal (see § 542.15(b)(3)), the inmate is encouraged to retain a copy of all exhibits for his or her personal records.
(4) The inmate shall date and sign the Request and submit it to the institution staff member designated to receive such Requests (ordinarily a correctional counselor). CCC inmates may mail their Requests to the CCM.
(d) Exceptions to initial filing at institution -
(1) Sensitive issues. If the inmate reasonably believes the issue is sensitive and the inmate's safety or well-being would be placed in danger if the Request became known at the institution, the inmate may submit the Request directly to the appropriate Regional Director. The inmate shall clearly mark “Sensitive” upon the Request and explain, in writing, the reason for not submitting the Request at the institution. If the Regional Administrative Remedy Coordinator agrees that the Request is sensitive, the Request shall be accepted. Otherwise, the Request will not be accepted, and the inmate shall be advised in writing of that determination, without a return of the Request. The inmate may pursue the matter by submitting an Administrative Remedy Request locally to the Warden. The Warden shall allow a reasonable extension of time for such a resubmission.
(2) DHO appeals. DHO appeals shall be submitted initially to the Regional Director for the region where the inmate is currently located.
(3) Control Unit appeals. Appeals related to Executive Panel Reviews of Control Unit placement shall be submitted directly to the General Counsel.
(4) Controlled housing status appeals. Appeals related to the Regional Director's review of controlled housing status placement may be filed directly with the General Counsel.
(5) Other requests for formal review of decisions not originating from the Warden. Other than the exceptions listed above, formal administrative remedy requests regarding initial decisions that did not originate with the Warden, or his/her staff, may be initially filed with the Bureau office which made the original decision, and appealed directly to the General Counsel.
(a) Submission. An inmate who is not satisfied with the Warden's response may submit an Appeal on the appropriate form (BP-10) to the appropriate Regional Director within 20 calendar days of the date the Warden signed the response. An inmate who is not satisfied with the Regional Director's response may submit an Appeal on the appropriate form (BP-11) to the General Counsel within 30 calendar days of the date the Regional Director signed the response. When the inmate demonstrates a valid reason for delay, these time limits may be extended. Valid reasons for delay include those situations described in § 542.14(b) of this part. Appeal to the General Counsel is the final administrative appeal.
(1) Appeals to the Regional Director shall be submitted on the form designed for regional Appeals (BP-10) and accompanied by one complete copy or duplicate original of the institution Request and response. Appeals to the General Counsel shall be submitted on the form designed for Central Office Appeals (BP-11) and accompanied by one complete copy or duplicate original of the institution and regional filings and their responses. Appeals shall state specifically the reason for appeal.
(2) An inmate may not raise in an Appeal issues not raised in the lower level filings. An inmate may not combine Appeals of separate lower level responses (different case numbers) into a single Appeal.
(3) An inmate shall complete the appropriate form with all requested identifying information and shall state the reasons for the Appeal in the space provided on the form. If more space is needed, the inmate may use up to one letter-size (81/2″ × 11″) continuation page. The inmate shall provide two additional copies of any continuation page and exhibits with the regional Appeal, and three additional copies with an Appeal to the Central Office (the inmate is also to provide copies of exhibits used at the prior level(s) of appeal). The inmate shall date and sign the Appeal and mail it to the appropriate Regional Director, if a Regional Appeal, or to the National Inmate Appeals Administrator, Office of General Counsel, if a Central Office Appeal (see 28 CFR part 503 for information on locating Bureau addresses).
(a) An inmate may obtain assistance from another inmate or from institution staff in preparing a Request or an Appeal. An inmate may also obtain assistance from outside sources, such as family members or attorneys. However, no person may submit a Request or Appeal on the inmate's behalf, and obtaining assistance will not be considered a valid reason for exceeding a time limit for submission unless the delay was caused by staff.
(b) Wardens shall ensure that assistance is available for inmates who are illiterate, disabled, or who are not functionally literate in English. Such assistance includes provision of reasonable accommodation in order for an inmate with a disability to prepare and process a Request or an Appeal.
(a) Rejections. The Coordinator at any level (CCM, institution, region, Central Office) may reject and return to the inmate without response a Request or an Appeal that is written by an inmate in a manner that is obscene or abusive, or does not meet any other requirement of this part.
(b) Notice. When a submission is rejected, the inmate shall be provided a written notice, signed by the Administrative Remedy Coordinator, explaining the reason for rejection. If the defect on which the rejection is based is correctable, the notice shall inform the inmate of a reasonable time extension within which to correct the defect and resubmit the Request or Appeal.
(c) Appeal of rejections. When a Request or Appeal is rejected and the inmate is not given an opportunity to correct the defect and resubmit, the inmate may appeal the rejection, including a rejection on the basis of an exception as described in § 542.14(d), to the next appeal level. The Coordinator at that level may affirm the rejection, may direct that the submission be accepted at the lower level (either upon the inmate's resubmission or direct return to that lower level), or may accept the submission for filing. The inmate shall be informed of the decision by delivery of either a receipt or rejection notice.
If accepted, a Request or Appeal is considered filed on the date it is logged into the Administrative Remedy Index as received. Once filed, response shall be made by the Warden or CCM within 20 calendar days; by the Regional Director within 30 calendar days; and by the General Counsel within 40 calendar days. If the Request is determined to be of an emergency nature which threatens the inmate's immediate health or welfare, the Warden shall respond not later than the third calendar day after filing. If the time period for response to a Request or Appeal is insufficient to make an appropriate decision, the time for response may be extended once by 20 days at the institution level, 30 days at the regional level, or 20 days at the Central Office level. Staff shall inform the inmate of this extension in writing. Staff shall respond in writing to all filed Requests or Appeals. If the inmate does not receive a response within the time allotted for reply, including extension, the inmate may consider the absence of a response to be a denial at that level.
Inmates and members of the public may request access to Administrative Remedy indexes and responses, for which inmate names and Register Numbers have been removed, as indicated below. Each institution shall make available its index, and the indexes of its regional office and the Central Office. Each regional office shall make available its index, the indexes of all institutions in its region, and the index of the Central Office. The Central Office shall make available its index and the indexes of all institutions and regional offices. Responses may be requested from the location where they are maintained and must be identified by Remedy ID number as indicated on an index. Copies of indexes or responses may be inspected during regular office hours at the locations indicated above, or may be purchased in accordance with the regular fees established for copies furnished under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).