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Question: How do I contest a citation or order issued by the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) for a mandatory health or safety violation?
Answer: When an MSHA inspector issues a citation or order under Section 104 of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 (Mine Act), a mine operator has 30 days to file a notice of contest with the Secretary of Labor at the appropriate Regional Solicitor's Office or at the Solicitor's Office, Mine Safety and Health Division in Arlington, Virginia. An operator may also challenge the modification of a citation or order, as well as the reasonableness of the length of time for abatement. An operator's failure to file a notice of contest of a citation or order issued under Section 104 of the Mine Act will not preclude the operator from challenging, in a penalty proceeding, the fact of violation or any special findings contained in a citation or order including the assertion in the citation or order that the violation was of a significant and substantial nature or was caused by the operator's unwarrantable failure to comply with the standard.