How To Intervene in a Case

What Does It Mean to Intervene?

Intervention is a process that allows a person who is not an original party to a case, but who will be directly and substantially affected by the outcome, to participate in the case as a party. A person that wants to intervene must make a request to the Commission in writing before intervention is granted. In a case that will have a hearing, the presiding Administrative Law Judge ("ALJ") will issue a Procedural Order that schedules the case for hearing. The Procedural Order typically includes a specific deadline by which a request to intervene must be submitted. If no intervention deadline is specified by Procedural Order, a request to intervene should be filed at least 5 days before the hearing commences. (See A.A.C. R14-3-105.) Even for cases that will not have a hearing, and for which no scheduling Procedural Order is issued, a person who will be directly and substantially affected may request to intervene. You should file a request to intervene as quickly as possible after you learn of a case.

It is important to note that providing public comment is not the same thing as intervening. An intervenor is a party to a case, with all the rights and responsibilities that entails, such as providing sworn testimony and cross-examining other parties' witnesses. A person providing public comment is not a party to a case and does not have those rights and responsibilities. Although the ALJ and Commissioners can and may consider public comment in their decision-making process, public comment does not carry the same weight as sworn testimony because public comments are not given under oath, and commenters are not subject to cross examination.

If you do not intervene in a case, you will not receive notice when filings are made in the case unless you have signed up to follow the docket for the case. See how to follow a docket.

Note: You do not need to request intervention in a generic or rulemaking docket because those docket types do not have parties. Any person can provide input in a generic or rulemaking docket, and all of the input is considered public comment. If you want to receive notice of filings made in a generic or rulemaking docket, you should sign up to follow the docket.

How Do I Intervene?

To request intervention, you must file a written request to intervene, either (a) by filing a hard copy request (meeting filing requirements) with Docket Control (Docket Control, 1200 West Washington, Phoenix, AZ 85007), or (b) by eFiling the request. Your request should be filed or eFiled by the deadline specified or as quickly as possible after you learn of the case. (You can use the Sample Intervention Request for guidance or complete the Fillable Intervention Request Form.)

Your request to intervene must contain the information below:

  1. Your name, address, and telephone number;
  2. The docket number for the case in which you are requesting to intervene;
  3. A short statement explaining:
    1. Your interest in the proceeding (e.g., a customer of the utility involved, a property owner in an area to be affected by the case, etc.),
    2. How you will be directly and substantially affected by the outcome of the case, and
    3. Why your intervention will not unduly broaden the issues in the case;
  4. If a hearing has not been scheduled, whether and why you believe a hearing is needed;
  5. A statement certifying that you have sent a copy of your request to intervene to the regulated company or its attorney and to all other parties of record in the case; and
  6. If you are not represented by an attorney who is an active member of the Arizona State Bar, and you are not representing yourself as an individual, sufficient information and any appropriate documentation to demonstrate compliance with Arizona Supreme Court Rules 31, 38, 39, and 42, as applicable. This only applies if you are NOT representing yourself and you are not a licensed attorney.

You must serve a copy of your request to intervene on each party of record on the service list for the case. The service list for the case can be found by searching for the case docket number using eDocket on the Commission website and selecting the "service list" tab on the page for the case. You must file your request to intervene with the Commission and serve it on the other parties on the same day.

For information about providing service on parties, see "How do I serve documents on other parties?" on the Intervention Fact Sheet.

Intervention is not automatic. You will not be granted intervention unless you have demonstrated a direct and substantial interest in the outcome of the case and that your intervention would not unduly broaden the issues before the Commission in the case. The ALJ will not act on your request to intervene until the parties of record have had an opportunity to object to your requested intervention. You will be notified regarding the decision on your request to intervene. If you are representing only your own interests before the Commission, it is not required that you have an attorney represent you; you can represent yourself. If you are representing anyone other than yourself, and you are not an attorney, you may be required to have an attorney represent you.

Resources

Intervention Fact Sheet

Fillable Intervention Request Form

Sample Intervention Request

How to Follow a Docket

Filing Requirements