N.J. Admin. Code § 10:87-8.4 - Right to request a fair hearing

Current through Register Vol. 54, No. 7, April 4, 2022

(a) The right to request a fair hearing shall not be limited or interfered with in any way.
1. Informal efforts to resolve a dispute may be made through field contacts, office interviews with supervisory personnel, consultation with the State DFD Field Representative, etc. In no event, however, shall such informal efforts be considered prerequisite to a fair hearing, nor shall they delay, replace, interfere with or otherwise impede the processing of a fair hearing which has been requested by the household.
2. The CWA shall offer agency conference to households which wish to contest a denial of expedited service under the procedures at 10:87-2.28 through 2.31. The CWA shall advise households that use of an agency conference is optional and that it shall in no way delay or replace the fair hearing process.
i. The agency conference may be attended by the eligibility worker responsible for the agency action, and shall be attended by an eligibility supervisor (other than the supervisor of the eligibility worker responsible for the action) and/or the agency director, and by the household and/or its representative.
ii. An agency conference for households contesting a denial of expedited service shall be scheduled within two working days of the date the household contests the action of the CWA, unless the household requests that it be scheduled later or states that it does not wish to have an agency conference.
iii. An agency conference may lead to an informal resolution of the dispute. However, a fair hearing must still be held unless the household makes a written withdrawal of its request for a hearing.
(b) CWAs shall conduct pre-hearing settlement conferences concerning NJ SNAP program appeals, except for IPV issues, in accordance with the following procedures:
1. The CWA shall contact the appellant to schedule a Pre-Hearing Settlement Conference (PHSC) within five working days as soon as the CWA receives and forwards the fair hearing request to the Division of Family Development (DFD). If the Fair Hearing request is made directly to DFD, the CWA will initiate the procedure upon notification of the request by DFD but not later than one day from receipt of the request.
2. The CWA Fair Hearing Liaison shall preside over the pre-hearing settlement conference and act as a mediator between the appellant and other appropriate CWA staff.
3. The CWA shall report the disposition of each NJ SNAP hearing request to the Division of Family Development, Bureau of Administrative Review and Appeals (BARA), with an information copy to the Office of Administrative Law within three working days. The report shall contain at a minimum, but not be limited to, the following information:
i. The contested issues;
ii. The scheduled time, date and location of a pre-hearing settlement conference;
iii. The verbal or written acceptance or declination by the appellant to attend a pre-hearing settlement conference;
iv. Whether or not a settlement was reached; and
v. Terms of the settlement or basis for the appellant's decision to withdraw. The report must be co-signed by the appellant and the mediator or other CWA official.

Notes

N.J. Admin. Code § 10:87-8.4
Amended by R.1989 d.121, effective 2/21/1989.
See: 20 N.J.R. 2689(a), 21 N.J.R. 511(b).
Added (b).
Amended by R.2004 d.181, effective 5/17/2004.
See: 36 N.J.R. 28(a), 36 N.J.R. 2425(a).
In (a), substituted "resolve a dispute" for "effect an adjustment" in 1 and amended the N.J.A.C. references in the introductory paragraph of 2; in (b), substituted references to the Division of Family Development (DFD) for references to the Division of Economic Assistance (DEA) in 1 and 3; deleted the introductory phrases throughout.
Administrative change.
See: 44 N.J.R. 1529(a).

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