Every two years, the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA), files a report to the Legislature on the performance of the Disability Advocacy Program (DAP). OTDA oversees the operation of DAP and is responsible for administering contracts and collecting data. As part of its DAP state support role, the Empire Justice Center assists OTDA in preparing the biennial DAP reports.
The latest DAP Biennial Report, covering 2016 and 2017, was finalized in October 2018 and filed with the Legislature. OTDA makes the report available on its website at http://otda.ny.gov/resources/DAP-Report.pdf.
According to the latest report, disabled New Yorkers served by the program received retroactive federal disability payments of over $18.3 million for 2016 and over $23.5 million for 2017.
In addition, DAP providers provided representation for 1,828 cases in 2016 and 2,153 cases in 2017, prevailing in 71% of the cases in 2016 and 74% of the cases in 2017. In 2016, the success rate nationally at an ALJ hearing was 46%, with the success rate in New York at 63%. In 2017, the success rate nationally at an ALJ hearing was 47% and the New York win rate was about 64%.
As a further benefit to the State, DAP program activity in 2016 resulted in an estimated $4.8 million public assistance cost avoidance realized by moving individuals from FA/State/locally funded public assistance to more appropriate federal disability assistance. DAP program activity in 2017 also generated $5.9 million in public assistance cost avoidance by moving individuals from FA/State/locally funded public assistance to more appropriate federal disability assistance.
As we enter our 35th year of providing DAP services, we celebrate the longevity of the Program and the continued ability of our dedicated advocates to provide high quality and successful representation to New York’s disabled citizens. Our message to the Governor and Legislature this year will be clear: with more funding, DAP advocates can do more good work for more people. Congratulations to all of our DAP advocates for a job well done.