OATH Proposed Amendments to Appearance Rule

Proposed Rules: Open to Comments

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Comment By: 
Wednesday, September 26, 2018
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City of New York

Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings

Notice of Public Hearing and Opportunity to Comment on Proposed Rule

What are we proposing? The Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings (OATH) proposes to amend section 6-09 of subchapter C and section 6-24 of subchapter F of chapter 6 of title 48 of the rules of the City of New York, concerning appearances.

When and where is the Hearing? OATH will hold a public hearing on the proposed rule. The public hearing will take place from 10:00 a.m. through 11:30 a.m. on September 26, 2018. The hearing will be in the OATH Conference Room located at 66 John Street, 10th Floor, New York, NY 10038.

How do I comment on the proposed rules? Anyone can comment on the proposed rule by:

  • Mail.  You can mail written comments to OATH, Attention: Simone Salloum, Senior Counsel, 100 Church Street, 12th Floor, New York, NY 10007.
  • Fax. You can fax written comments to OATH, Attention: Simone Salloum, Senior Counsel, at 646-500-5742.
  • Hearing.  You can speak at the hearing. Anyone who wants to comment on the proposed rule at the public hearing must sign up to speak. You can sign up before the hearing by calling OATH at 212-436-0708, or you can also sign up in the hearing room before the hearing begins on September 26, 2018. You can speak for up to three (3) minutes.

Is there a deadline to submit written comments? You may submit written comments up to 5:00 p.m. on September 26, 2018.

What if I need assistance to participate in the Hearing? You must tell us if you need a reasonable accommodation of a disability at the Hearing. You must tell us if you need a sign language interpreter. You can tell us by mail at 100 Church Street, 12th Floor, New York, NY 10007. You may also tell us by telephone at 212-436-0708. Advance notice is requested to allow sufficient time to arrange the accommodation. Please tell us by September 19, 2018.

This location has the following accessibility option(s) available: Wheelchair Accessible.

Can I review the comments made on the proposed rule? You can review the comments that have been submitted online by visiting the NYC rules website at http://rules.cityofnewyork.us/. A few days after the hearing, a transcript of the hearing and copies of the written comments will be available to the public at OATH, 66 John Street, 10th Floor, New York, NY 10038.

What authorizes OATH to make this rule? Section 1049(2)(a) of the New York city charter (“charter”) authorizes OATH to make this proposed rule. This proposed rule was included in OATH’s regulatory agenda for this Fiscal Year.

Where can I find OATH’s rules? OATH’s rules are in title 48 of the rules of the city of New York.

What laws govern the rulemaking process? OATH must meet the requirements of section 1043(b) of the charter when creating or changing rules. This notice is made according to the requirements of Sections 1043(b) and 1049(2)(a) of the charter.

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Proposed Rule

The Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings (“OATH”) proposes to amend section 6-09 of subchapter C and section 6-24 of subchapter F of chapter 6 of title 48 of the rules of the City of New York, concerning appearances.

The proposed amendments to section 6-09 reorder the subdivisions and clarify the rules about appearing before the Tribunal, as follows:

  • Proposed subdivisions (a) and (b) set out who may appear on behalf of a respondent and how a respondent or representative may appear.
  • Proposed subdivision (c) explains that if a respondent does not wish to contest the summons, they can pay the penalty before the hearing, which is considered an appearance and admission.
  • Proposed subdivision (d) provides the framework for when a current owner of a property may appear on behalf of a prior owner.
  • Proposed subdivision (e) provides that the failure of a respondent to timely appear constitutes a default.
  • Proposed subdivision (f) references the requirements in § 6-24 for registered representatives who wish to appear on 15 or more summonses on a given hearing date, and provides that failure to comply with § 6-24 will constitute a default. 
  • Proposed subdivisions (g) and (h) set out how Petitioner may timely appear, and provide that the hearing may proceed without Petitioner.

The proposed amendments to section 6-09 are intended to expedite hearings and improve the overall efficiency of the Tribunal.  These proposed amendments set timeframes for Respondent and Petitioner’s appearance to be considered timely. Proposed section 6-09(b)(1) adds the condition that a respondent’s appearance is timely if the respondent appears at the scheduled hearing location within two hours of the scheduled time. Proposed section 6-09(g) adds the condition that, if the Petitioner elects to appear at the Tribunal, Petitioner’s appearance is timely if Petitioner is ready to proceed within 30 minutes of the timely appearance of the respondent.

The proposed amendments to section 6-09 also no longer permit a person to move for discretionary intervention, which, if granted, would have allowed an intervenor to participate in a hearing, as a witness but not as a party, at the discretion of the hearing officer. Discretionary intervention was rarely sought and did not grant the intervenor the status of a party to the proceeding.

The proposed amendments to section 6-24 clarify the requirements for an attorney or registered representative to appear on 15 or more summonses on a given hearing date and replace former subdivision (b), which gave the Tribunal discretion on the day of the hearing to add cases to the list provided by the attorney or registered representative, with a provision stating that failure to appear at or before the scheduled hearing time constitutes a default.

This proposal was included in OATH’s FY 2018 and 2019 Regulatory Agendas.

Public Hearing
Subject: 

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Public Hearing Date: 
Wednesday, September 26, 2018 -
10:00am to 11:30am
Contact: 

OATH Rules, 212-436-0708

Location: 
10th Floor Conference Room
66 John Street 10th Floor
New York, NY 10038