|(a) Once a claim is filed in accordance with §14.10 of this title (relating to Claims Against the Fund), the department shall investigate the claim and may conduct a hearing to determine the amount due the aggrieved party. All hearings shall be conducted by a department hearing officer in accordance with the provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act and the department's General Rules of Practice and Procedure found at Chapter 1, Subchapter A of this title (relating to General Practice and Procedure). (b) The agency hearing officer shall have the same authority as prescribed for the administrative law judge in §1.18 of this title (relating to Administrative Law Judges). (c) Parties may protest the recommendation made by the department hearing officer by filing a Notice of Protest in accordance with §14.12 of this title (relating to Filing of Notice of Protest; Appeal to the Board). If no protest is filed,
the case will be forwarded to the Deputy Commissioner for a final agency determination. (d) Parties may also protest the agency's final determination by filing a Notice of Protest in accordance with §14.12 of this title (relating to Filing of Notice of Protest; Appeal to the Board). (e) If no Notice of Protest is filed, the department's determination becomes final and any payment awarded may be made.