Title 49. State Administration

Chapter 13. Administrative Procedure

Part II. Rule Promulgation



49:968      Judicial review of validity or applicability of rules


A. (1) The validity or applicability of a rule may be determined in an action for declaratory judgment in the district court of the parish in which the agency is located. 


(2) The agency shall be made a party to the action. 


B. (1) If, before the date set for hearing, application is made to the court for leave to present additional evidence, and it is shown to the satisfaction of the court that the additional evidence is material and that there were good reasons for failure to present it in the proceeding before the agency, the court may order that the additional evidence be taken before the agency upon conditions determined by the court. 


(2) The agency may modify its findings and decision by reason of the additional evidence and shall file that evidence and any modifications, new findings, or decisions with the reviewing court. 


C. The court shall declare the rule invalid or inapplicable if it finds that it violates constitutional provisions or exceeds the statutory authority of the agency or was adopted without substantial compliance with required rulemaking procedures. 


D. An action for a declaratory judgment under this Section may be brought only after the plaintiff has requested the agency to pass upon the validity or applicability of the rule in question and only upon a showing that review of the validity and applicability of the rule in conjunction with review of a final agency decision in a contested adjudicated case would not provide an adequate remedy and would inflict irreparable injury. 


E. Upon a determination by the court that any statement, guide, requirement, circular, directive, explanation, interpretation, guideline, or similar measure constitutes a rule as defined by R.S. 49:951 and that the measure has not been properly adopted and promulgated pursuant to this Chapter, the court shall declare the measure invalid and inapplicable. It shall not be necessary that all administrative remedies be exhausted. 


F. With respect to the challenge of an occupational regulation, the plaintiff shall prevail if the court finds by a preponderance of evidence that the challenged occupational regulation on its face or in its effect burdens entry into a profession, trade, or occupation, and that an agency has failed to prove by a preponderance of evidence that the challenged occupational regulation is demonstrated to be necessary and narrowly tailored to fulfill legitimate fiduciary, public health, safety, or welfare objectives. Upon a finding for the plaintiff, the court shall enjoin further enforcement of the challenged occupational regulation and shall award reasonable attorney fees and costs to the plaintiff, except in the case of a challenged occupational regulation promulgated by an occupational licensing board that participates in the Department of Justice Occupational Licensing Review Program pursuant to R.S. 49:260. 


G. The provisions of this Chapter shall not apply to administrative rules promulgated pursuant to the Human Life Protection Act, R.S. 40:1061 et seq. 


Redesignated from R.S. 49:963 by Acts 2022, No. 663, § 1. Added by Acts 1966, No. 382, § 13, eff. July 1, 1967. Amended by Acts 1991, No. 639, § 1, eff. July 17, 1991; Acts 1997, No. 1043, § 1, eff. July 11, 1997; Acts 2022, No. 583, § 2; Acts 2023, No. 98, § 1, eff. June 6, 2023.