Online Resource Center


Fair Hearings
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Welcome to the Online Resource Center.  To enter a database, click on the buttons to the left.  Once you are in the database you will be able to search; submit summaries, hearings, pleadings, and decisions; view links to the 10 most recent submissions; and link to an index of submissions for each database. 

In General:  The is no charge for using the Online Resource Center, but you must register before you can use it. If you are already registered, once you log in, you can click on the "My Account" button and request access to additional data bases. (Users with wnylc email addresses have already been added to the benefits data base).

If you have not already registered, please click the "Login" button to the left to proceed.  Everyone who registers will be given access to the administrative hearings area.  The administrators of the other areas will review all applications for access and will respond as quickly as possible.

Fair Hearing Bank:  This resource, which will remain open to all users, contains over 2,500 decisions in the administrative hearing bank.  New decisions are added on a regular basis.

Benefits Database:  Here you will find unreported decisions, helpful briefs and other litigation related documents on line.  The cases in this database include public assistance, food stamps, Medicaid, child care, foster care, and related issues.  Access is restricted to legal services attorneys and others representing poor and low income individuals and families.

New for housing advocates! "CATRAP":    The "Computer Assisted Tenant Representation Advocacy Program" offers attorneys preparing defenses in eviction proceedings not only a comprehensive selection of available defenses (with explanations for each) but also direct links to relevant cases, caveats on using the defense, and other practice tips.  CATRAP even gives you generic text to incorporate directly into your Answer and supplies quotes from caselaw or statutory  authority suitable to use in your supporting affidavit or Memorandum of Law.

Domestic Violence Case Law Update:  Here you will find comprehensive summaries of selected domestic violence-related state court decisions in New York, as well as some federal decisions.  Access is restricted to New York State-based civil legal services attorneys.

DAP Numbers:  Here you will find comprehensive summaries of federal court decisions related to Social Secruity Disability and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) issues.  You will also find decisions by SSA's Appeals Council or Administrative Law Judges, as well as sample letters and memorandum by advocates.  Additionally, other documents or materials related to Social Security disability claims referred to in the Disability Law News or the DAP listserv are also included.  The summaries of these decisions are searchable by key words.  New matierals are added on a regular basis.



How do I search the Online Resource Center?

You can find the summary of any case posted to the Online Resource Center by searching with relevant words, such as "lump sum". Using words like "food stamps" will give you too broad a response. In the Fair Hearing Bank, the search will bring up summaries of all relevant decisions. After reviewing the summaries, you can click the title for any summary and obtain a copy of the fair hearing decision.

In the Benefits Database, some documents are not available online. When you click on the name of a document that is not available, an email address will pop up so that you can request the document. Once a request is made we will post the document to the web. We can also fax/email the document directly to you.

We hope you find the online resources useful. Please contact us if you encounter any glitches or have suggestions for improvement.

How do I submit fair hearings and other materials to Online Resources?

Fair Hearings Database: If you've won a case that might be helpful to others or lost a case with a decision that will be instructive to others you can upload the relevant document or send your decision to the Empire Justice Center, 119 Washington Avenue, Albany, NY 12210, Attn: Susan C. Antos, and submit a completed submission with your decision to make our work easier, and provide us with any relevant information not obvious from the text of the decision. You do not need to remove client identifying information, unless you would otherwise like to do so. We wilI post an electronically redacted copy which we receive from the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance. If you remove client information, you must leave the fair hearing number. Leave your client's initials if possible to make it easier to index these decisions. Original or very clean copies are appreciated because they scan the clearest. If you remove client identifying information, please use white out because it makes it easier to scan.

Benefits Law Database: Briefs, motions, stipulations, consent decrees and decisions can be posted to the Benefits Law Database in a variety of ways:

Online - submit a summary of your case online and upload the any scanned documents

Online and Snail Mail - Submit a summary of your case on line and mail a copy of your documents to:

Empire Justice Center
119 Washington Avenue
Albany, NY 12210

Attn: Susan Antos

Document Only - you've got a great case, but don't have the time to summarize... just mail or email the document and GULP will summarize it for you.

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You may reach the Fair Hearing Bank by using the following link:

or through these contacts:

Empire Justice Center 
119 Washington Avenue
Albany, NY 12210
Phone: (518) 462-6831
Fax: (518) 462-6687
Western New York Law Center, Inc.
237 Main Street, Suite 1130
Buffalo, NY 14203
Phone: (716) 855-0203
Fax: (716) 270-4005

You must be logged in to the online resources in order to view or download documents. 


PDF files require Adobe's free Acrobat Reader.  If you do not have the free pdf reader, you can get it by clicking the image below.




RTF/DOC files should open in any version of Word or Wordperfect.