University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
new search
page permalink
Case Name A.M. v. Mattingly CW-NY-0006
Docket / Court 1:10-cv-02181 ( E.D.N.Y. )
State/Territory New York
Case Type(s) Child Welfare
Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Public Benefits / Government Services
Special Collection Olmstead Cases
Attorney Organization Legal Services/Legal Aid
Case Summary
On May 12, 2010, the plaintiffs filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York alleging that New York's Administration for Children's Services (ACS) routinely forces children in foster care to be unnecessarily institutionalized in psychiatric hospitals rather than ... read more >
On May 12, 2010, the plaintiffs filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York alleging that New York's Administration for Children's Services (ACS) routinely forces children in foster care to be unnecessarily institutionalized in psychiatric hospitals rather than placed in home-like settings. The plaintiffs alleged that ACS was using placement in psychiatric institutions as punishment for misbehavior and that many children placed in these hospitals did not have a diagnosis of mental illness. The plaintiffs also alleged that children are forced to stay in institutions long after it is determined that they can be placed in a less restrictive environment, but that ACS's policies make discharge difficult.

The named plaintiffs, three currently institutionalized children, requested their release from institutions. They also sought to represent a class of children and demanded that the court order ACS to discontinue its "illegal pattern and practice of 'dumping' children in foster care in psychiatric hospitals and refusing to let them out." The plaintiffs alleged that these policies violated the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, state laws and regulations, the New York Constitution, and the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

The case moved quickly toward settlement, with the parties stipulating to certify the class and postpone a hearing on the Plaintiffs' motion for preliminary injunction. In November 2010, the parties submitted a settlement agreement to the court for preliminary approval. The court (Judge Brian M. Cogan) held a fairness hearing on March 11, 2011, and gave its approval to the terms of the Stipulation and Order of Settlement filed on February 28, 2010.

In the settlement, ACS agreed to promulgate new policies and procedures with respect to the placement of children in foster care in institutions. ACS will improve tracking, monitoring, and individualized planning so that children are not ignored and left to languish in institutions. They also agreed to develop new training programs for ACS staff and contractors. The agreement also provides for ongoing monitoring. A separate agreement, entered on June 29, 2011, provided specific relief (including damages and attorney fees) to the three named plaintiffs. On July 7, 2011, the court (Judge Cogan) entered a settlement order, in which the parties agreed to dismiss all claims and release defendants from liability in exchange for payment. The case was then dismissed with prejudice.

On January 22, 2016, the parties filed a joint motion to alter the judgment. Judge Cogan signed the Stipulation and Order of Settlement the same day. The amended agreement extended the jurisdiction of the Court over the matter for an additional four months, until June 30, 2016, with the potential for extension of such jurisdiction for six months from the time the Court's jurisdiction was scheduled to terminate.

Beth Kurtz - 02/15/2013
Frances Hollander - 02/21/2016


compress summary

- click to show/hide ALL -
Issues and Causes of Action
click to show/hide detail
Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
Disability
disability, unspecified
Integrated setting
Least restrictive environment
Mental impairment
Discrimination-basis
Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)
General
Classification / placement
Commitment procedure
Counseling
Deinstitutionalization/decarceration
Education
Failure to train
Foster care (benefits, training)
Individualized planning
Juveniles
Placement in mental health facilities
Medical/Mental Health
Mental health care, general
Mental health care, unspecified
Mental Disability
Mental Illness, Unspecified
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.
Ex parte Young (federal or state officials)
Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701
State Anti-Discrimination Law
State law
Defendant(s) New York City Administration for Children's Services
Plaintiff Description Plaintiffs are children with mental illness in foster care who are currently institutionalized in psychiatric facilities.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Legal Services/Legal Aid
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Attorneys fees
Damages
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 2011 - 2016
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
click to show/hide detail
Case Studies Legal Accountability in the Service-Based Welfare State: Lessons from Child Welfare Reform
By: Kathleen G. Noonan, Charles F. Sabel, William H. Simon (Center for High Impact Philanthropy , Columbia Law School and Stanford Law School)
Citation: 34 Law & Soc. Inquiry 523 (Summer 2009)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Making Child Welfare Work: How the R.C. Lawsuit Forged New Partnerships to Protect Children and Sustain Families
By: Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law (Bazelon Center)
Citation: (1998)
[ Detail ]

Docket(s)
1:10-cv-2181 (E.D.N.Y.) 01/22/2016
CW-NY-0006-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Stipulation and Order for Class Certification 05/08/2010 (E.D.N.Y.)
CW-NY-0006-0004.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Class Action Complaint 05/12/2010
CW-NY-0006-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum of Law in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction 05/14/2010
CW-NY-0006-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation and Order Withdrawing Motion for Preliminary Injunction 05/19/2010 (E.D.N.Y.)
CW-NY-0006-0003.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum of Law in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Approval of Settlement and Approval of Notice 11/17/2010
CW-NY-0006-0006.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation and Order of Settlement 02/28/2011 (E.D.N.Y.)
CW-NY-0006-0009.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation and Order of Settlement as to Attorneys' Fees 06/29/2011 (E.D.N.Y.)
CW-NY-0006-0011.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Amendment No. 1 to Stipulation and Order of Settlement 01/22/2016 (E.D.N.Y.)
CW-NY-0006-0012.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Cogan, Brian Mark (E.D.N.Y.)
CW-NY-0006-0004 | CW-NY-0006-0009 | CW-NY-0006-0011 | CW-NY-0006-0012 | CW-NY-0006-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Banks, Steven L. (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0001 | CW-NY-0006-0002 | CW-NY-0006-0003 | CW-NY-0006-0004 | CW-NY-0006-9000
Braman, Leonard Matthew (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0001 | CW-NY-0006-0002 | CW-NY-0006-9000
Cleary, Lisa E. (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0001 | CW-NY-0006-0002 | CW-NY-0006-0003 | CW-NY-0006-0004 | CW-NY-0006-0006 | CW-NY-0006-0009 | CW-NY-0006-0011 | CW-NY-0006-0012 | CW-NY-0006-9000
Engelhardt, Jordan Michael (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0001 | CW-NY-0006-0002 | CW-NY-0006-9000
Forte, Kimberly (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0001 | CW-NY-0006-0002 | CW-NY-0006-0003 | CW-NY-0006-0004 | CW-NY-0006-9000
Freeman, Lisa (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0012 | CW-NY-0006-9000
James, Seymour (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0012
Moser, Theresa B. (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0012
Rosenbloom, Nancy (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0001 | CW-NY-0006-0002 | CW-NY-0006-0003 | CW-NY-0006-0004 | CW-NY-0006-0006 | CW-NY-0006-9000
Schmedlin, William F. (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0001 | CW-NY-0006-0002 | CW-NY-0006-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Calhoun, Martha Anne (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0003 | CW-NY-0006-0004 | CW-NY-0006-0009 | CW-NY-0006-0011 | CW-NY-0006-9000
Cardozo, Michael A. (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0003 | CW-NY-0006-0004 | CW-NY-0006-0011
Kruk, Carolyn Elizabeth (New York)
CW-NY-0006-0012 | CW-NY-0006-9000
Rosinus, David Alan Jr. (New York)
CW-NY-0006-9000
Weber, Steven Douglas (New York)
CW-NY-0006-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

- click to show/hide ALL -

new search
page permalink

- top of page -