An impartial official who presides over administrative-law proceedings with the authority to make decisions that are legally binding, similar to a civil court judge. (Administrative law regulates government agencies.) For example, if a state unemployment office denies your claim for unemployment benefits, you likely have the right to appeal the denial in a hearing before an administrative law judge, once you've exhausted other avenues at the unemployment office. Called an administrative judge for short. Abbreviation is ALJ.