Notice of Proposed Class Action Settlement in Brooks v. Roberts

Shannon Sswiatek August 07, 2019

Empire Justice Center and the National Center for Law and Economic Justice have reached a settlement in a class action lawsuit.  The lawsuit claimed that the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) violated the law by failing to provide legally adequate notices to people receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) whose benefits were reduced or terminated because of the time limit for Able-bodied Adults without Dependents (ABAWDs). The case is called Brooks v. Roberts, 16-CV-1025 (NDNY). The proposed settlement is not an admission of wrongdoing by OTDA and the court has not decided who is right or wrong. Rather, the parties have reached a compromise to end the lawsuit and avoid further litigation.

Individuals are members of the settlement class if, between January 1, 2016 and December 31, 2018, they received SNAP benefits that were reduced or terminated for failing to meet a work requirement applicable to ABAWDs. The Court ordered that this Notice of Proposed Settlement of Class Action, available here, be provided to class members.

The Court will hold a Hearing on September 17, 2019 to consider whether to approve the settlement. Class members can review the full settlement agreement submitted to the Court here. Class members can appear at the hearing to object to the settlement, but do not have to. Class members may object to the settlement in writing by September 10, 2019. The Notice of Proposed Settlement of Class Action describes where to mail written objections.