About this Service

Right to a Hearing 

When the Finance and Management Agency, Revenue Division (the "Department") issues a formal ruling that effects the amount a taxpayer owes the City of Oakland (the "City"), that taxpayer has the right to request a review of the Department's decision. Any taxpayer that requests an informal hearing must do so within the deadline set in the governing regulations. Timelines for hearings may vary.

Each party can have legal counsel and/or a financial advisor at their own cost. 

Notice of Hearing: 
A Notice of Hearing with time and location of the hearing and summary of the contested Department acton will be sent to you

Hearing Officer: 
The Hearing Officer will be the Director of Finance or a designee, unless the applicable regulations provide otherwise. The Hearing Officer shall not communicate with one party without the presence of the other party regarding the merits of the issues of the hearing with either the petitioner or City staff presenting the Department's position. 

Submitting Papers: 
All written evidence submitted for reconsideration must be received by the Department for presentation to the Hearing Officer and by the other party at least five (5) business days prior to the hearing, with copies delivered to the other party the same day before 5 pm. 

The Hearing Officer can allow either or both parties to submit written evidence after the deadline in these guidelines. All documents must be signed and dated, and have a current return address. 

Faxed or e-mailed documents received after 5:00 p.m. are considered to be received on the next business day. 

All hearings are closed to the public. The attendees will include only the Hearing Officer, the parties of the administrative proceeding, legal counsel and/or financial advisors representing the parties, and any witnesses.

The hearing will be recorded and the recording preserved for at least seven (7) years.

The Hearing Officer calls the hearing to order, explains the hearing procedures, and states the Department's contested action .

Opposing parties will present their positions and evidence first, one after the other. Each parties has the right to testify, call witnesses with personal knowledge of the relevant event(s), and present other relevant evidence necessary to prove disputed facts. Each party shall have ten (10) minutes to present their position and evidence. 

The Hearing Officer has discretion to allow any party to have additional time to present their respective positions and evidence. After each party has presented their respective positions and evidence, they will each have five (5) minutes to deliver a rebuttal/final statement.

After the final arguments, the Hearing Officer will close the hearing. The Hearing Officer will not consider information received after the record is closed unless, at the hearing, the Hearing Officer specifically orders or authorizes the submission of evidence afterwards.

As a finder of fact, the Hearing Officer may question anyone attending.

A request to continue the hearing may be granted by the Hearing Officer when there is reasonable cause.

The parties shall be respectful to the Hearing Officer, the other parties and witnesses. Disruptive persons may be removed from the hearing.

The Decision:
The Hearing Officer must rely on relevant and competent evidence to reach a decision. The Hearing Officer will issue a written decision within a reasonable time after the conclusion of the hearing and then deliver a copy to both parties. If a decision has not been rendered within three (3) months after the hearing, the Hearing Officer will notify the parties of the status of the decision and the date by which the decision shall be rendered. The decision notification shall contain the specific findings of fact. The Hearing Officer's decision is final and not subject to Department review or approval, unless otherwise provided in the applicable regulations.