Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates
Please check this page often for changes to operations in the Office of State Review in light of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency.
The Office of State Review has made changes to the authorized procedures for serving and filing a Notice of Intention to Seek Review, a Notice of Intention to Cross Appeal, and a Request for Review. The Office of State Review will continue to post available guidance regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and its effect upon the process of appealing an impartial hearing officer's decision here.
Deadlines. The ordinary deadlines that petitioner must adhere to when challenging an impartial hearing officer's decision are described in the appeal guide on this web site; however, those timelines have been extended or "tolled" as of March 20, 2020. Also it is not necessary to personally serve papers on the opposing party and alternate methods of service have been authorized. These modifications are set forth in the Revised General Order dated March 22, 2020.
GENERAL ORDER dated March 20,2020 (superseded)
REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated March 22, 2020 (superseded)
SECOND REVISED GENERAL ORDER dated April 21, 2020 (superseded)
Extensions of 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; however, under the emergency circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic, State Review Officers are entertaining extensions of the timeline that approach 30 days (i.e. 28 or 29 days), but not in excess of the timeline for the State Review Officer to issue a decision.
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. However, the Governor of the State of New York has relaxed the requirements for how papers can be notarized. A description of how notaries are permitted to perform their duties remotely has been published by the Department of State. March 25, 2020 DOS guidance.
Telephone calls. The Office of State Review is operating with limited in-person resources. In response to the public health emergency for the COVID-19 virus, all non-essential State employees for New York State’s agencies and public authorities, including the State Education Department, will not be reporting to work for two weeks, beginning March 17, 2020. Accordingly, during this time, when calling the Office of State Review, staff may be unavailable at times to answer the telephone. The Office of State Review is continuing to perform the key functions of the office and is accepting requests for review and all filings by mail. The Office also continues to issue appeal decisions. In light of the expected delays in our ability to respond to telephone calls and messages, we appreciate your patience. Leaving a telephone message with your name, telephone number, fax number (if any), and the nature of your concern is the best way to obtain a response from the Office of State Review.
Judicial Review and Requests for Certified Records. Due to ongoing delays related to COVID-19, new requests for certified copies of hearing records for submission to a court will be delayed beyond our normal business practice and additional lead time should be allowed for in making a request for a certified copy of a hearing record for any matter that is currently proceeding in a court.
Electronic Filing. Although the Office of State Review does not formally accept filings by solely by facsimile or e-mail, the Office has established a temporary mechanism to allow electronic filings through encrypted means during the COVID-19 pandemic. The instructions for electronic filings in the Question and Answer document must be followed carefully. OSR Questions and Answers Regarding Electronic Filing
If you need assisistance 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.