The district courts of the United States are vested with jurisdiction specifically to enforce, and to prevent and restrain any person from violating, an order or regulation made or issued under this subchapter.
A civil action authorized to be commenced under this section shall be referred to the Attorney General for appropriate action, except that the Secretary shall not be required to refer to the Attorney General a violation of this subchapter if the Secretary believes that the administration and enforcement of this subchapter would be adequately served by providing a suitable written notice or warning to the person committing the violation or by administrative action under subsection (c).
Any person who willfully violates any provision of an order or regulation issued by the Secretary under this subchapter, or who fails or refuses to pay, collect, or remit an assessment or fee required of the person under an order or regulation, may be assessed—
(i) a civil penalty by the Secretary of not more than $1,000 for each violation; and
(ii) in the case of a willful failure to pay, collect, or remit an assessment as required by an order or regulation, an additional penalty equal to the amount of the assessment.
Each violation under subparagraph (A) shall be a separate offense.
In addition to, or in lieu of, a civil penalty under paragraph (1), the Secretary may issue an order requiring a person to cease and desist from continuing a violation.
No penalty shall be assessed, or cease-and-desist order issued, by the Secretary under this subsection unless the person against whom the penalty is assessed or the cease-and-desist order is issued is given notice and opportunity for a hearing before the Secretary with respect to the violation.
The order of the Secretary assessing a penalty or imposing a cease-and-desist order under this subsection shall be final and conclusive unless the affected person files an appeal of the order in the appropriate district court of the United States in accordance with subsection (d).
Any person who has been determined to be in violation of this subchapter, or against whom a civil penalty has been assessed or a cease-and-desist order issued under subsection (c), may obtain review of the penalty or cease-and-desist order by—
(A) filing, within the 30-day period beginning on the date the penalty is assessed or cease-and-desist order issued, a notice of appeal in—
(i) the district court of the United States for the district in which the person resides or carries on business; or
(ii) the United States District Court for the District of Columbia; and
(B) simultaneously sending a copy of the notice by certified mail to the Secretary.
The Secretary shall file promptly, in the appropriate court referred to in paragraph (1), a certified copy of the record on which the Secretary determined that the person committed the violation.
A finding of the Secretary under this section shall be set aside only if the finding is found to be unsupported by substantial evidence.
Any person who fails to obey a cease-and-desist order issued under this section after the cease-and-desist order has become final and unappealable, or after the appropriate United States district court has entered a final judgment in favor of the Secretary, shall be subject to a civil penalty assessed by the Secretary, after opportunity for a hearing and for judicial review under the procedures specified in subsections (c) and (d), of not more than $5,000 for each offense. Each day during which the failure continues shall be considered as a separate violation of the cease-and-desist order.
If a person fails to pay an assessment of a civil penalty under this section after the assessment has become a final and unappealable order, or after the appropriate United States district court has entered final judgment in favor of the Secretary, the Secretary shall refer the matter to the Attorney General for recovery of the amount assessed in the district court of the United States for any district in which the person resides or carries on business. In an action for recovery, the validity and appropriateness of the final order imposing the civil penalty shall not be subject to review.
The remedies provided in this subchapter shall be in addition to, and not exclusive of, other remedies that may be available.
(Pub. L. 104–127, title V, §539, Apr. 4, 1996, 110 Stat. 1061.)