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A complaint in an administrative proceeding must be specific enough to allow a party to prepare a defense.  Statutes and rules require a clear and concise statement of the claims or charges upon which the petitioner seeks the relief. Even though due process may not require strict compliance with notice and pleading in administrative proceedings, and even though injustice may not result in a particular case, compliance with reasonable procedural rules is necessary for efficiency.[i]

If the applicant is not represented by counsel, pleadings should be liberally construed.  Hearing in administrative proceeding should be based on issues and violations stated in the proper notice or complaint.[ii]  Only those issues and violations should be considered while deciding the matter.

[i] Tafaro’s Inv. Co. v. Division of Housing Improv., 261 La. 183 (La. 1972)

[ii] FRJ Corp. v. Mason, 4 P.3d 896 (Wyo. 2000)

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