Appeals FAQ
  1. What is an appeal?
  2. Can I get a new hearing if I appeal?
  3. How is an appeal decided?
  4. What will happen with my appeal?
  5. How do I file an appeal?
  6. What steps must I take for my Appeal Application to be accepted?
  7. When must I file an appeal?
  8. What if I cannot file an appeal within thirty (30) days of the mailing date on the Decision & Order?
  9. How do I prove that I sent something to the agency responsible for the summons?
  10. What if I want to appeal but cannot pay the penalty now?
  11. My request for a waiver of penalty was granted but I am still receiving notices to pay from OATH. Why?
  12. How do I get a copy of the audio recording of the hearing?
  13. What are the reasons my appeal will not be considered?
  14. I received a copy of an appeal from the agency responsible for my summons. What do I do?
  15. I received a copy of an answer from the agency responsible for my summons. Can I respond to the answer?
  16. How long does it take for my appeal to be decided?
  17. I received an OATH appeal decision and I do not agree with the decision. What can I do?
  1. What is an appeal?
    If you think the Hearing Officer got the facts or the law wrong, or left out something important from the hearing decision, you may choose to file an appeal. You are not allowed to appeal only because you do not want to pay the penalty.
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  3. Can I get a new hearing if I appeal?
    No, an appeal is not a new hearing. If you appeal, the appeals unit will use the evidence and testimony already presented at the hearing in reaching a decision.

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  4. How is an appeal decided?
    The appeals unit will review your appeal application, the summons, the evidence and testimony presented at the hearing, the Hearing Officer's decision, the law and decisions that have been made in other cases.
  5. There is a link under the Resources module on the top of each page on this section of the website that says "Appeal Decisions." That link will take you to a database where you can research appeal decisions made in other cases. Simply check the box that says Environmental Control Board (ECB) once you are on the site.

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  6. What will happen with my appeal?
    The appeals unit will issue a decision to "affirm" your hearing decision (keep the same result) or "reverse" it (change the result). Or, if there is something important in the case that was not decided at the hearing, the appeals unit will "remand" the case (send it back to a Hearing Officer for a new hearing).
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  8. How do I file an appeal?
    To file an appeal, you may complete and submit an Appeal Application form. The Appeal Application form is available on our website or at any OATH location. The Appeal Application form can be mailed, delivered in person, or submitted online. Please note that there are additional steps, further explained below, that are required before your Appeal Application can be accepted.
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  10. What steps must I take for my Appeal Application to be accepted?
    There are three steps that must be completed in order for OATH to accept your Appeal Application.
    1. Your Appeal Application form must be received by OATH within 30 days of when the Decision was hand delivered or mailed to you, whichever date is earlier. (See "When must I file an appeal" below.)

    2. You must also send the agency responsible for your summons a copy of your Appeal Application form and prove to OATH that you sent it. (See "How do I prove that I sent something to the agency responsible for the summons?" below.) On the back of your decision, look for the type of violation you were charged with. The agency responsible for your summons will be listed right below it, along with an address. You must send a copy of your Appeal Application to that address.

    3. You must also pay the penalty amount stated in the decision or receive a waiver due to financial hardship. (See "What if I want to appeal but cannot pay the penalty now?" below.)

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  12. When must I file an appeal?
    Appeals must be filed within thirty (30) days of the date the decision was hand delivered or mailed to you, whichever date is earlier. The date of the decision was hand delivered or mailed to you will be stamped on the decision next to the Hearing Officer's signature. If you are sending your appeal by mail, you must allow enough time for OATH to receive it.
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  14. What if I cannot file an appeal within thirty (30) days of the date the Decision was hand delivered or mailed to me?
    You may make a request to OATH for additional time to appeal by using the Extensions & Hearing Recordings form, available on our website or at any OATH location. You must submit the request for extension to OATH within 30 days of the date the decision was hand delivered or mailed to you, whichever date is earlier. You must also send a copy of the request for extension to the agency responsible for the ticket and include proof that you did that in the request that you send to OATH. (See "How do I prove that I sent something to the agency responsible for the summons?" below.) .) And you MUST still pay the penalty or submit a request for a hardship waiver within 30 days of the date the decision was hand delivered or mailed to you, whichever date is earlier.
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  16. How do I prove that I sent something to the agency responsible for the summons?
    Proof that you sent the appeal, extension request, or answer to the agency is called "proof of service." There are four kinds of proof of service that OATH will accept:
    1. You can submit your appeal by e-mail to the agency responsible for the summons at the same time you file your appeal with OATH if you make your submission using OATH's online appeal form. OATH accepts this electronic record as proof of service.

    2. If you mail a copy of the request to the agency and receive proof of mailing from the United States Postal Service or other mail delivery service, you may submit that.

    3. If you do not receive proof of mailing from the mail delivery service, OATH will accept a statement from you that you sent a copy to the agency. The statement must include when and how you sent the appeal or request, the address that you sent it to, and your declaration that the statement is "made under penalty of perjury."
    4. If you hand deliver a copy of your appeal or request to the agency, you may ask the agency to stamp "Received" on your own copy of it. OATH will accept that copy with the agency's "Received" stamp as proof of service.

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  18. What if I want to appeal but cannot pay the penalty now?
    If you are submitting your appeal by mail:

    If you cannot pre-pay the penalty because of financial hardship and you are sending your appeal by mail you may request a financial hardship waiver by completing the applicable section on the OATH Appeal Application form or Extensions & Hearing Recordings form. You must explain how paying the penalty before you appeal would be a financial hardship and attach proof of hardship. Usually that proof is the first two pages of your Federal tax return. If your request is granted, you will not need to pay the penalty while your appeal is being decided. If you lose your appeal, you will then have to pay the penalty.

    Please note that requesting a financial hardship waiver is not a guarantee that it will be granted. Therefore, you should make sure to submit your request early enough so that if it is denied, you will still have time to pay the penalty within 30 days of the date the decision was hand delivered or mailed to you, whichever date is earlier.

    If you are submitting your appeal online:

    If you cannot pre-pay the penalty because of financial hardship and you are submitting your appeal using the Online Appeal form, you can request a financial hardship waiver by completing and submitting the Financial Hardship Application online form in addition to submitting your Online Appeal or Online Extensions & Hearing Recordings form. You must explain how paying the penalty before you appeal would be a financial hardship and attach proof of hardship. Usually that proof is the first two pages of your Federal tax return. If your request is granted, you will not need to pay the penalty while your appeal is being decided. If you lose your appeal, you will then have to pay the penalty.

    Please note that requesting a financial hardship waiver is not a guarantee that it will be granted. Therefore, you should make sure to submit your request early enough such that if it is denied, you will still have time to pay the penalty within 30 days of the date the decision was hand delivered or mailed to you, whichever date is earlier.

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  20. My request for a waiver of penalty was granted but I am still receiving notices to pay from OATH. Why?
    You will continue to receive notices from OATH while your appeal is being decided, even if your request for a waiver of penalty was granted. You do not need to pay unless your appeal is denied.
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  22. How do I get a copy of the audio recording of the hearing?
    You can request the audio recording of your hearing by using the Extensions & Hearing Recordings form available on our website or at any OATH location. To request the hearing recording you MUST pay the penalty stated in the decision, post a bond in the full amount acceptable to OATH, or apply for a hardship waiver within 30 days of the date the decision was hand delivered or mailed to you, whichever date is earlier. You must submit the request to OATH within 30 days of the date the decision was hand delivered or mailed to you, whichever date is earlier. You must also send a copy of the request to the agency responsible for the ticket and include proof that you did in the request that you submit to OATH.
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  24. What are the reasons my appeal will not be considered?
    An appeal will not be considered if:
    1. Your Appeal Application form (or request for an extension or the audio recording) is received by OATH more than thirty (30) days after the decision was hand delivered or mailed to you, whichever date is earlier; or

    2. You do not include proof that you sent the agency responsible for your summons a copy of your Appeal Application form (or request for an extension or the audio recording); or

    3. You do not pay the penalty stated on the decision or do not receive a financial hardship waiver.

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  26. I received a copy of an appeal from the agency responsible for my summons. What do I do?
    The agency responsible for the summons has the right to appeal, just as you do. If you receive a copy of an appeal from the agency, you may submit an answer to OATH to respond to the agency's appeal. If you choose to submit an Answer, you must do so within 20 days of the mailing date of the agency's appeal. You must also send a copy of your Answer to the agency and send proof of service to OATH. (See "How do I prove that I sent something to the agency responsible for the ticket?" above.)
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  28. I received a copy of an answer from the agency responsible for my summons. Can I respond to the answer?
    If you file an appeal, the agency responsible for your summons is allowed to write back to OATH and tell us why the decision should not be changed. This is called an "answer" to the appeal. If the agency files an answer to your appeal, you will be sent a copy, but you are not permitted to file a response to the answer.
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  30. How long does it take for my appeal to be decided?
    OATH decides all appeals within 180 days from the date OATH receives the Appeal Application form.
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  32. I received an OATH appeal decision and I do not agree with the decision. What can I do?
    If you want to challenge an OATH Appeal decision, you may do so in New York State Supreme Court in a special proceeding under Article 78 of the New York Civil Practice Law and Rules. OATH does not control the procedure in the New York State Supreme Court. You should consult a lawyer or contact the Clerk of the Court in your county for more information.
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Resources
ECB Hearings OpenData Portal
ECB Board Meeting Calendar
Legal Resources
Appeal Decisions
Hearings Division Rules
Glossary of Legal Terms

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