The chief administrative law judge shall by rule establish uniform procedures for the submission and consideration of applications for an award of fees and expenses in a contested case proceeding. If a court reviews the underlying decision of the contested case under sections 14.63 to 14.68, an award for fees and expenses may be made only under subdivision 3.
A party dissatisfied with the fee determination made under subdivision 1 may petition for leave to appeal to the court having jurisdiction to review the merits of the underlying decision of the contested case. If the court denies the petition for leave to appeal, no appeal may be taken from the denial. If the court grants the petition, it may modify the determination only if it finds that the failure to make an award, or the calculation of the amount of the award, was an abuse of discretion.
(a) In awarding fees and expenses under subdivision 1 to a prevailing party in an action for judicial review of a contested case under sections 14.63 to 14.68, the court shall include in that award fees and expenses to the extent authorized in section 15.472.
(b) Fees and expenses awarded under this subdivision may be paid in accordance with section 15.473, subdivision 2.