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This entry was published on 2014-09-22
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SECTION 31.17
Formal hearings; procedure
Mental Hygiene (MHY) CHAPTER 27, TITLE E, ARTICLE 31
§ 31.17 Formal hearings; procedure.

(a) When a hearing must be afforded pursuant to this chapter, the
hearing shall be held without undue delay and all parties shall be given
reasonable notice of the time, place, and nature of the hearing.

(b) The commissioner, acting as hearing officer, or any person
designated by him as hearing officer shall have power to:

1. administer oaths and affirmations.

2. issue subpoenas, which shall be regulated by the civil practice law
and rules.

3. take testimony.

4. control the conduct of the hearing.

(c) The rules of evidence observed by courts need not be observed
except that the rules of privilege recognized by law shall be respected.
Irrelevant or unduly repetitious evidence may be excluded.

(d) All parties shall have the right to counsel and be afforded an
opportunity to present evidence and cross-examine adverse witnesses.

(e) If evidence at the hearing relates to the identity, condition, or
clinical record of a patient, the hearing officer may exclude all
persons from the room except parties to the proceeding, their counsel
and the witnesses. The record of such proceeding shall not be available
to anyone outside the department other than a party to the proceeding or
his counsel, except by order of a court of record.

(f) The commissioner may establish regulations to govern the hearing
procedure and the process of determination of the proceeding.

(g) The commissioner shall issue a ruling within ten days after the
termination of the hearing or, if a hearing officer has been designated,
within ten days from the hearing officer's report.

(h) The hearing officer shall submit an initial report and proposed
order in writing to the commissioner within sixty days of the conclusion
of the hearings.