Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates
Operations in the Office of State Review During the Coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency.
The Office of State Review made changes to the authorized procedures for hearing record submissions and for serving and filing pleadings during the COVID-19 pandemic. As an outgrowth of the pandemic, a permanent e-Filing System was established in March 2023 which can be found here. As noted below, the temporary Drop Secure method of electronic filing was discontinued on April 28, 2023. The information on this page is provided for historical context purposes, but does not describe the current procedures in place before the Office of State Review.
Extensions of time. Parties who seek a specific extension of the timelines in Part 279 are strongly encouraged to use the e-Filing System to make such requests. At this time, the Office of State Review continues to respond to extension requests for serving responsive pleadings and other applications made by mail or facsimile to the office. Under ordinary operating circumstances for an extension of time, State Review Officers tend to allow extensions of time of no more than two weeks. While State Review Officers granted longer extensions of time during the complete shutdown during the early phases of the pandemic, as of July 13, 2020 the State Review Officers returned to the customary practice of entertaining extensions of time in two week intervals.
Deadlines. The deadlines that petitioner must adhere to when challenging an impartial hearing officer's decision are described in the appeal guide on this web site. Those timelines were suspended or "tolled" as of March 20, 2020 under an Executive Order of the Governor; however, the terms of the Executive Order are no longer in effect. Accordingly, the Chief State Review Officer issued a Thirteenth Revised General Order, and for IHO decisions dated December 15, 2020 or thereafter, no suspension or tolling provisions are applicable. The Sixteenth Revised General Order indicates, among other things, that no further General Orders will be issued thereafter.
GENERAL ORDER dated March 20,2020 (superseded)
REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated March 22, 2020 (superseded)
SECOND REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated April 21, 2020 (superseded)
THIRD REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated May 19, 2020 (superseded)
FOURTH REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated June 11, 2020 (superseded)
FIFTH REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated June 29, 2020 (superseded)
SIXTH REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated July 31, 2020(superseded)
EIGHTH REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated August 21, 2020 (superseded)
TENTH REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated October 26, 2020 (superseded)
FOURTEENTH REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated March 5, 2021 (superseded)
Notary services. The general requirement to have certain papers notarized are described in the verification and affidavit of service portions of the appeal guide, and the general notarization requirement remains in effect. According to the Department of State, the relaxation of the rules that authorized remote notarization during the pandemic is no longer active effective June 24, 2021. Further updates regarding revisions to State law and agency guidance regarding notary services may be found on the web site of the Department of State.
Judicial Review and Requests for Certified Records. Requests for certified copies of hearing records for submission to a court will be processed under normal business practices provided the party seeking a certified copy of a hearing record has filed a complete request with all of the required information. The Office of State Review does not require a court order for a certified record and only requires requests from a party to be in writing that contains the requisite information. To be clear, parties should not submit a proposed order to a court imposing specific deadline on OSR without consulting with the Office of State Review. The staffing resources may not be available to comply with the request if a party fails to consult with OSR.
Electronic Filing. Now that a permanent e-Filing System has been established, all parties are strongly encouraged to use that filing method. That method is required if a party files documents electronically with the Office of State Review. The temporary Drop Secure mechanism used to allow electronic filings through encrypted means during and in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic was discontinued effective April 28, 2023. As a reminder, direct filing via electronic mail or facsimile is NOT accepted by the Office of State Review.
If you need assistance with another area such as P-12 schools, colleges and universities, licensed professionals, adult education programs, please be sure to see the New York State Education Department's COVID-19 web page.