Thursday, February 23, 2012

Terminated probationer has the burden of proof in challenging his or her dismissal

Terminated probationer has the burden of proof in challenging his or her dismissal
Lane v City of New York, 2012 NY Slip Op 01257, Appellate Division, Second Department

In affirming Supreme Court’s dismissal of a dismissed probationary employee’s petition seeking reinstatement to his former position, the Appellate Division set out the following guidelines that courts consider in adjudicating such an action.

1.The employment of a probationary employee may be terminated without a hearing and without a statement of reasons in the absence of the former probationary employee demonstrating that his or her termination was made in bad faith, for a constitutionally impermissible or an illegal purpose, or in violation of statutory or decisional law.

2. Judicial review of the discharge of a probationary employee is limited to whether the determination was made in bad faith or for the other improper or impermissible reasons set forth above and the burden of proof is on the individual.

3. The individual’s speculation that his or her dismissal was made in bad faith is insufficient to warrant a hearing.

The Commissioner of Education indicated the same standard would apply had he considered the appeal submitted by a probationary teacher challenging her termination by the school board [see Decisions of the Commissioner Education, Decision No. 16,329, http://publicpersonnellaw.blogspot.com/2012/02/probationer-has-burden-of-establishing.html].

The Lane decision is posted on the Internet at:
http://www.courts.state.ny.us/reporter/3dseries/2012/2012_01257.htm

Handbooks focusing on State and Municipal Public Personnel Law continue to be available for purchase via the links provided below:

The Discipline Book at http://thedisciplinebook.blogspot.com/

Challenging Adverse Personnel Decisions at http://nypplarchives.blogspot.com

The Disability Benefits E-book: at http://section207.blogspot.com/

Layoff, Preferred Lists at http://nylayoff.blogspot.com/

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