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Impact Litigation

Patterns of injustice and broad institutional failures can deprive thousands of people of their rights. NYLAG seeks systemic reform for these individuals through class actions and other impact litigation.

Wrongful denial of public benefits, fraudulent debt collection, disability discrimination, and predatory for-profit colleges can harm tens of thousands of vulnerable people. Yet those dealing with these challenges often feel like they are in the battle alone. Many do not realize that they have rights that can be enforced. This is where we come in.

Our Approach

Our Special Litigation Unit (SLU) collaborates with NYLAG attorneys across practice areas to identify broad institutional failures. Alone, or in partnership with private firms and other not-for-profit organizations, we initiate class actions and other impact lawsuits to bring about systemic change for thousands of people in need. 

What is a class action? It is a lawsuit in which a group of people who suffer similar harm caused by the same conduct sue a defendant together—seeking redress for all those who are injured, even those who cannot find their own lawyers or appear in court.

Our Recent Wins

We secured a settlement worth nearly $6 million for 61,000 New Yorkers victimized by fraudulent debt collection litigation [Mayfied v. Asta, settlement Apr. 2018]

We challenged New York’s denial of critical subsistence benefits to certain asylum applicants, prompting New York to change the policy and extend benefits to those immigrants [Colaj v. Roberts, filed Aug. 2017, policy change Nov. 2017]

We reached a settlement requiring the United States Department of Education to notify 60,000 student loan borrowers harmed by Wilfred Beauty Academy, a chain of abusive for-profit schools, of their right to seek valuable loan discharge [Salazar v. DeVos, settlement approved Aug. 2017, administered through the present]

We reached a settlement forcing NY State to better protect Medicaid home health care recipients whose managed long-term care providers unlawfully stopped or reduced their care [Caballero v. Senior Health Partners, settlement approved Dec. 2018]

We entered an unprecedented settlement requiring a charter school network to make far-reaching changes to protect students with disabilities entitled to special education supports [Achievement First, settlement approved Dec. 2017]

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Help us provide free legal services to children and adults in need of a lawyer.

NYLAG is part of the solution to end broad institutional failures.

NYLAG Obtains FOIA Response About SSA’s Proposed Payroll Information Exchange with Equifax

After NYLAG filed a FOIA lawsuit, SSA produced the contract it had entered into with Equifax, pricing tables, an addendum which outlined the specific standards for the Equifax payroll information exchange, and relevant data privacy and security guidelines for the development of such a system. On February 15, 2024, SSA issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that sets forth a proposed rule for the use of this data matching process.

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