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October 3, 2011

Appealing a final administrative decision


Appealing a final administrative decision
Diamond v Gallagher, 291 A.D.2d 404

The Diamond decision by the Appellate Division, Second Department, demonstrates the importance of filing a timely appeal challenging an administrative determination if the individual is unhappy with the ruling.

Suffolk County sent a letter to one of its police officers, Michael Diamond, notifying him of an administrative decision to terminate him from his position. About two years later Diamond filed a petition pursuant to Article 78 of the Civil Practice law and Rules [CPLR] challenging his dismissal from the Department.

Supreme Court rejected Diamond's petition as untimely and he appealed the court's ruling to the Appellate Division. Affirming the lower court's determination, the Appellate Division succinctly set out the basic rule for filing a timely appeal of an administrative decision as follows:

1. Section 217(1) of the CPLR provides that a proceeding pursuant to CPLR Article 78 against a body or an officer must to be commenced "within four months after the determination to be reviewed becomes final and binding upon the petitioner".

2. An administrative determination is final and binding when it has an impact upon the individual and when the individual knows he or she is aggrieved.

Finding that the challenged determination became final on the effective date of Diamond termination, and that he was informed of his termination and that he acknowledged it on that date, the Appellate Division said that "the Supreme Court correctly dismissed the proceeding commenced over two years later as untimely."

NEW YORK PUBLIC PERSONNEL LAW ELECTRONIC HANDBOOKS

The Discipline Book - A concise guide to disciplinary actions involving public officers and employees in New York State. For more information click on http://booklocker.com/books/5215.html

A Reasonable Disciplinary Penalty Under the Circumstances - Determining an appropriate disciplinary penalty to be imposed on an employee in the public service found guilty of misconduct or incompetence. For more information click on http://booklocker.com/7401.html

Disability Benefits for fire, police and other public sector personnel - Addresses retirement for disability under the NYS Employees' Retirement System, the NYS Teachers' Retirement System, General Municipal Law Sections 207-a/207-c and similar statutes providing benefits to employees injured both "on-the-job" and "off-the-job." For more information click on http://booklocker.com/books/3916.html

The Layoff, Preferred List and Reinstatement Manual -Focusing on relevant laws, rules and regulations, and selected court and administrative decisions. For more information click on http://booklocker.com/books/5216.html

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Text prepared by Harvey Randall except as otherwise noted. Randall, former Principal Attorney, New York State Department of Civil Service, also served as Director of Personnel for the State University System; as Director of Research, Governor’s Office of Employee Relations; and as Staff Judge Advocate General, New York Guard. He has an MPA from the Maxwell School, Syracuse University and a J.D. from Albany Law School.