November 11, 2011:
The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, the state’s highest appellate court, granted an application for Further Appellate Review in an appeal filed by Joshua N. Garick. In allowing this extraordinary grant of review – a remedy allowed less than 5% of the time – the Court was convinced that the case substantially affected the public interest and the interests of justice. In this case, the Court will interpret vague regulations created by the Department of Housing and Community Development and will answer three important issues: (1) whether a tenant in public housing can be allowed to invite guests into their home; (2) whether a housing authority can disregard grievance procedures when terminating a tenant’s rental subsidy; and (3) whether ex parte communications are permitted during agency hearings. Mr. Garick will argue that the procedures employed by the housing authority were unlawful and deprived the client of her constitutional right to a fair hearing. The case is slated to be heard by a panel of seven justices in October of 2012.