The court stated: “Although the form includes instructions to inform an inmate about the nature of the hearing, the charges against him or her and the fact that the hearing will be conducted in the refusing inmate’s absence, the record reflects no information regarding the steps taken to ascertain the legitimacy of petitioner’s refusal or to inform him of his right to attend the hearing and the consequences of his failure to do so.” Wilson v. Annucci, #523541 (3d Dep’t) (March 2, 2017).

Court Orders Expungement Of Disciplinary Charges Due To Inadequate Employee Assistance And Wrongful Denial Of Witness

On February 9, 2017, the Appellate Division, Third Department issued a decision in the case holding that our client was prejudiced by the assistant’s failure to interview the requested witnesses and that the Hearing Officer erred in denying the requested witness based on his own speculation regarding the content of the witness’s testimony.

Halinka Zolcik – Accredited Representative

Halinka Zolcik Accredited RepresentativeTel.: 518-694-8699 x 2106 Halinka joined the Albany office of PLS as an immigration law graduate/immigrant justice corps fellow in September 2017. Halinka received her JD from the University of Wyoming College of Law in May 2017. Before attending law school, she worked for a criminal law district court judge forContinue reading “Halinka Zolcik – Accredited Representative”

John Peng – Federal Litigation & Appellate Staff Attorney

John Peng Federal Litigation & Appellate Staff Attorney, 41 State St., Ste. M112 Albany, NY 12207 T: (518) 694-8699 ext. 2102 John Peng,  Federal Litigation & Appellate Staff Attorney John joined the Immigration Unit in August 2019 as an Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow. He received his J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School.Continue reading “John Peng – Federal Litigation & Appellate Staff Attorney”

Maria Pagano – Senior Supervising Attorney

Maria Pagano Senior Supervising Attorney (716) 854-1007 ext. 1301 Maria has practiced public interest and poverty law for over 20 years in New York, Arizona, and on the Navajo Nation. Prior to her current position at PLS, she was the Managing Attorney at DNA-People’s Legal Services in Flagstaff, Arizona, where she practiced family law,Continue reading “Maria Pagano – Senior Supervising Attorney”

Betsy Hutchings – Deputy Director

Betsy Hutchings Deputy Director  (607) 273-2283 Betsy has been the Deputy Director of Prisoners’ Legal Services since 2017. In this capacity, Betsy writes and edits the PLS newsletter Pro Se, organizes the prisoner education materials, handles professional responsibility issues, reviews and comments on proposed legislation and regulations and is responsible for writing PLS staffContinue reading “Betsy Hutchings – Deputy Director”

Jillian Nowak – Managing Attorney

Jillian Nowak Managing Attorney (716) 844-8266 ext. 1323 Jillian Nowak was born and raised in Buffalo, NY. Jillian received her B.A. in Sociology from Hofstra University and her J.D. from the University at Buffalo with a concentration in International Law. In 2014, as the recipient of the Buffalo Human Rights Center Fellowship, JillianContinue reading “Jillian Nowak – Managing Attorney”

James Milstein – Managing Attorney

James Milstein Managing Attorney (518) 694-8699 ext. 2101 cell (518) 423-1719 Jim Milstein graduated from the University of Vermont in 1980 and Albany Law School in 1983. He was an Assistant Public Defender for Albany County and a partner in the law firm of Milstein & Milstein from 1984 to 2011.  Jim was theContinue reading “James Milstein – Managing Attorney”