The Fair Hearing Information System (FHIS), a sub-system of New York State's Welfare Management System (WMS), tracks each administrative appeal from the date of the Fair Hearing request to the date of issuance of the Fair Hearing Decision through any efforts to enforce compliance with the decision. See
a sample FHIS report by clicking here: http://onlineresources.wnylc.net/FairHearingResources/docs/fhis_report.pdf
The Fair Hearing Compliance Unit of the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) of the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) is hardly the model of clarity in communication. Typically, appellants and their representatives are sent acknowledgements of their complaints of local agency non-compliance with Fair Hearing Decisions and then, after long passages of time, receive closing letters, declaring that OAH has received reports from the local agencies and is satisfied with their compliance actions. No compliance reports, listing of benefits issued or other explanations are provided by OAH to appellants and their representatives.
Bereft of help, appellants without representatives often request new Fair Hearings in the hope of enforcing past Fair Hearing Decisions. Advocates may have difficulty discerning the extent of local agency compliance actions, particularly where Fair Hearing Decisions remand matters back to the local agency for further review and action.
PPPL requests can help to unlock the mysteries surrounding Fair Hearing Decision compliance actions and enforcement by obtaining all FHIS data as well as copies of correspondence and electronic communications between the OAH Compliance Unit and the local agency.Example
Three months after you initially complained to OAH about the local agency's failure to comply fully with a Fair Hearing Decision, you receive a closing letter, telling you that OAH is satisfied that the agency has fully complied with the decision.
Besides asking for benefit-related data [see http://onlineresources.wnylc.net/FairHearingResources/showquestion.asp?faq=17&fldAuto=276
], your PPPL request might also seek:
All information pertaining to the Fair Hearing [Fair Hearing number] decided on [date], including but not limited to:
1. All data stored on the Fair Hearing Information System (FHIS) with respect to this appeal,
2. All communications among the staff of the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) and/or between OTDA and the local agency with respect to compliance with and enforcement of this Fair Hearing Decision.
As used in this request, the term, "communications," means the conveyance of information by any means, including such methods as written, electronic, telephonic and face-to-face transmission of information. For any orally expressed communications (such as face-to-face and telephonic contacts), please provide all written and/or electronically entered and/or stored notes pertaining to such communications.