When the AHA makes a decision that has a negative impact on an applicant or resident family, the family is often entitled to appeal the decision. Informal hearings provide the applicant and/or resident family a means to hear the details of the reasons for rejection or administrative decision, and an opportunity to present evidence to the contrary if available, and to claim mitigating circumstances where applicable.
Persons with disabilities may request reasonable accommodations to participate in the informal hearing process and the AHA must consider such accommodations. The AHA must also consider reasonable accommodation requests pertaining to the reasons for denial if related to the person’s disability. The family is entitled to be represented by an attorney or other designee, at the family’s expense, and to have such person make statements on the family’s behalf.
Where Limited English Proficiency (LEP) persons desire, they will be permitted to use, at their own expense, an interpreter of their own choosing, in place of or as a supplement to the free language services offered by AHA. The interpreter may be a family member or friend.
The AHA will only offer informal hearings reviews to applicants for whom assistance includes; denying listing on the PHA waiting list; denying or withdrawing a voucher; refusing to enter into a HAP contract or approve a lease; refusing to process or provide assistance under portability procedures. The AHA will give an applicant prompt notice of a decision denying eligibility for admission. The notice will contain a brief statement of the reasons for the AHA decision, and will also state that the applicant may request an informal hearing to dispute the decision. The notice will describe how to obtain the informal hearing which includes submitting a request in writing within 10 business days.
In cases where the PHA makes a decision for which an informal hearing must be offered, the notice to the family will include all of the following:
The proposed action or decision of the AHA.
A brief statement of the reasons for the decision, including the regulatory reference.
The date the proposed action will take place.
A statement of the family’s right to an explanation of the basis for the AHA’s decision.
A statement that if the family does not agree with the decision, the family may request an informal hearing of the decision.
A deadline for the family to request the informal hearing.