A COVID-19 UPDATE from Mayerson & Associates

March 22, 2020
Dear Friends:
With remote learning starting for so many of your children tomorrow, we wanted to check-in. Over the past few weeks, we have spoken to many of our client families. If we can provide any help through these very stressful times, please call us at 212.265.7200 or email us to set up a call. We will get through this together.
Reimbursements
  • We are still receiving reimbursements/funding from the DOE
  • Eric, our designated reimbursement specialist, continues to submit for reimbursement/funding (typically within 48 hours of receiving all required documentation)
  • Please continue to provide all requested documentation to Eric as soon as possible
Settlements
  • In NYC, we continue to follow up with the DOE on a regular basis regarding settlements
  • Our office has not experienced a decline in responsiveness from the DOE
  • In NJ, mediation has been suspended – we continue to be in communication with attorneys from Districts to try and resolve matters
  • Please contact your attorney if you have any questions in this regard
Hearings
  • In NYC, hearings continue to be scheduled and are proceeding telephonically
  • If you have a hearing scheduled please remain in close communication with your attorney regarding next steps
 IEP meetings and evaluations
  • DO NOT assume that any evaluations or meetings are cancelled
  • In NYC, the CSEs are shifting to a remote practice from March 20, 2020, through April 17, 2020. Please contact your attorney before communicating with anyone from the DOE
  • If you have a meeting or evaluations scheduled or you receive any communication from the DOE regarding same, please contact your attorney to discuss next steps including helping you communicate with the DOE about your consent and availability to participate at meetings telephonically as well as coordinating and sharing any necessary reports
Documentation
Recent Update from the United States Department of Education
  • The United States Department of Education has issued a supplemental fact sheet stating that school districts “must remember that provision of FAPE may include, as appropriate, special education and related services provided through distance instruction provided virtually, online, or telephonically”
  • We see this guidance as a positive step in preserving our clients’ special education entitlements
Funding for in-person therapy under “stay at home” orders
  • All workers in nonessential businesses across New York and New Jersey are required to stay home
  • NY Governor Cuomo – executive order (E.O. 202.7)
  • NJ Governor Murphy – executive order (E.O. 107)
  • Clients are encouraged to speak with their respective therapists and providers regarding their designation as essential businesses
  • Families should investigate their health insurance benefits as these services may be provided as “medical” services if not “educational”
  • For client families with providers providing in-home services, please contact your attorney to discuss
Funding for Virtual therapy/teletherapy
  • There is a strong legal argument to be made that virtual therapies should be funded
  • Families should investigate their health insurance benefits as these services may be provided as “medical” services if not “educational”
  • Please contact your attorney if you a receiving virtual therapies/related services
  • Further Updates from the NYCDOE
  • DOE will be providing FAQ shortly on their website which will include topics such as related services, remote learning instruction, teletherapy, etc.
OPWDD
Notarizing documents
  • In NY, Executive Order (E.O. 202.7) allows for documents to be notarized utilizing audio-video technology
  • In the event you need to notarize a document for your matter, please contact your assigned attorney and/or paralegal to assist
The Effect of the federal stimulus bill on your child’s rights under the Individual with Disabilities Act (IDEA)
As we navigate the unprecedented and rapidly changing environment due to COVID-19, we are continuously monitoring the situation to strategize the best practices to maintain the best chance of reimbursement/funding for our clients. As always, we are available for individual calls with our clients to address your specific matter as each family’s circumstances will be unique.
We were alerted that some of our clients had not received our previous E-blasts.
Below you will find links to our last few emails:
Wishing you and your families continued safety, health and perseverance.
Your team at Mayerson & Associates

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