Leading Administrative Law firm, Cohen Hochman & Allen (CHA), wins unanimous ruling from the Appellate Division, First Department that directs the Environmental Control Board (ECB) to vacate default judgments on test cases. The court specifically found that the violations were not served properly on the respondents when the agency’s issuing officer made only one attempt to serve the respondent personally, and his affidavit of service lacked information describing the details of this attempt. The court said, “[t]he failure to make any effort at personal service runs afoul of the New York City Charter’s directive that a ‘reasonable attempt’ at personal service be made prior to resort[ing] to alternative means of service.”
The decision should have a major impact on how NYC agencies serve their violations on property owners and tenants. The Appellate court has drawn a line in the sand, directing the City to make a better attempt to properly serve its violations.
Located in downtown Manhattan, CHA is a leading Administrative law firm focusing on NYC regulatory law. CHA’s attorneys represent clients in violation hearings as well as a variety of other NYC property matters: Environmental Control Board, Health Department, Housing Court, Consumer Affairs, Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings and Criminal Court. The firm has more than 25 years of experience in challenging New York City violations. Robert Hochman is a former director of administrative enforcement at the New York City Department of Building. The firm’s attorneys include several former prosecutors from the Department of Buildings and a former administrative law judge of the ECB.