A04089 Summary:

COSPNSRGottfried, Perry, Spano, Hoyt
MLTSPNSRClark, Colton, Dinowitz, Jacobs, John, O'Donnell, Sweeney, Weinstein, Wright
Amd SS624 & 626, Exec L
Expands eligibility for those who receive awards under crime victims' compensation to include a domestic partner; defines domestic partner; further provides for out-of-pocket loss to include the cost of counseling for surviving family members of homicide victims.
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A04089 Actions:

01/30/2009referred to governmental operations
02/25/2009amend and recommit to governmental operations
02/25/2009print number 4089a
03/24/2009reported referred to codes
03/31/2009reported referred to ways and means
04/23/2009advanced to third reading cal.381
04/27/2009passed assembly
04/27/2009delivered to senate
01/06/2010DIED IN SENATE
01/06/2010ordered to third reading cal.306
04/21/2010passed assembly
04/21/2010delivered to senate
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A04089 Memo:

submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the executive law, in relation to eligibility of domestic partners for compensation from the crime victims' board   PURPOSE: This bill would allow people maintaining significant and long-term, yet not legally formalized, relationships with homicide victims to be eligible for compensation from the Crime Victims Board for actual out of pocket losses and counseling expenses. Such people would include, for example, elderly siblings or relatives sharing living quar- ters in a mutually interdependent relationship, adult partners in long- term committed relationships not formalized by marriage and those who have parent-child relationships but have not entered into a formal adoption arrangement.   SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: This bill would amend Executive Law section 624 to allow a family member of a homicide victim, who resided with the victim at the time of such crime and with whom the victim maintained a long-term relationship characterized by emotional and financial commit- ment and interdependence, to be eligible for compensation from the Crime Victims Board when the victim died as a direct result of such crime. The term "family" is currently defined in Executive Law. sec. 621(4). This bill also would amend Executive Law sec. 626 by adding a new subdi- vision 4 to provide that out of pocket loss shall include the cost of counseling for surviving family members of homicide victims who are otherwise eligible pursuant to section 624(1 )(b).   JUSTIFICATION: Currently, the Crime Victims Board has no authority to compensate family members of homicide victims unless such persons are relatives listed explicitly in Exec. 1. sec. 624 or unless they are principally dependent on the victim for financial support. In the absence of such financial dependence, a long-term adult living compan- ion, or a person in a parent-child relationship not formalized by an adoption order, may not recover under the current statute. A recent trend in New York has been to broaden the definition of "fami- ly" to include persons who maintain long-term substantial relationships but not formalized by marriage licenses or orders of adoption. In fact, in response to the World Trade Center attack on September 11, 2000, the Governor extended the definition of family to domestic partners of victims of the attack in order to make them eligible for compensation. SEE BRASCHI V. STAHL ASSOCIATES CO., 74 N.Y.2d 20r, (1989), in which the Court of Appeals stated that for purposes of protection from eviction under the New York City rent control law, the term "family" not be rigidly restricted to those people who have formalized their relation- ship by obtaining, for instance, a marriage certificate or an adoption order... but instead should find its foundation in the reality of family life. ID., at 211. Such persons are readily distinguishable from "mere room- mates". ID. at 212. New York City recently initiated a new policy on paid bereavement leave for City employees who live with a partner outside of marriage. The impact of a partner's death despite the lack of legal formalization of a relationship is recognized by this legislation. Although the Crime Victims Board statute already defines "family" very broadly. Exec. L. sec. 621 (4), definition is currently used only for narrow purposes and not to determine who should receive compensation for out of pocket loss and counseling expenses. Those persons within this broader definition of family are no less traumatized by the crime- caused death of a person with whom they maintain a committed relation- ship than are those who have legally formalized their relationship prior to the commission of the crime. By combining the existing statutory definition of "family" with a requirement that the claimant show that he or she had a long-term inter- dependent relationship with the victim, the statute would more clearly reflect societal changes and would more fairly compensate those whose lives are forever changed by the homicide of a loved one.   LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2000: S.3217 Referred to Crime Victims, Crime and Correction A.6204 Referred to Governmental Operations 2002: A.4980 Reported from Govern- ment Operations and Referred to Ways and Means 2003-04: A. 1033 Reported Referred to Ways and Means 2007-09: S.2416A Referred to Crime Victims, Crime and Correction A.4526 Advanced to third reading calendar   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: The Crime Victims Board has estimated that approximately $28,000 per year from existing appropriations would be required to cover awards to the additional eligible claimants under this bill.   EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the one hundred eight- ieth day after it shall have become law.
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A04089 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
            S. 1422--A                                            A. 4089--A
                               2009-2010 Regular Sessions
                SENATE - ASSEMBLY
                                    January 30, 2009
        IN  SENATE  --  Introduced by Sens. SCHNEIDERMAN, ADAMS, BRESLIN, DUANE,
          read  twice  and  ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to
          the Committee on Crime  Victims,  Crime  and  Correction  --  reported

          favorably  from  said  committee  and  committed  to  the Committee on
          Finance -- committee discharged, bill amended,  ordered  reprinted  as
          amended and recommitted to said committee
        IN  ASSEMBLY -- Introduced by M. of A. GLICK, GOTTFRIED, PERRY, SPANO --
          Multi-Sponsored by -- M. of A. CLARK, COLTON, DINOWITZ, JACOBS,  JOHN,
          O'DONNELL, SWEENEY, WEINSTEIN, WRIGHT -- read once and referred to the
          Committee  on  Governmental  Operations  -- committee discharged, bill
          amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said  commit-
        AN  ACT to amend the executive law, in relation to eligibility of domes-
          tic partners for compensation from the crime victims' board
          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:

     1    Section 1. Paragraph (b) of subdivision 1 of section 624 of the execu-
     2  tive  law,  as amended by chapter 427 of the laws of 1999, is amended to
     3  read as follows:
     4    (b) a surviving spouse or domestic partner, grandparent, parent, step-
     5  parent, child or stepchild of a victim of a crime who died as  a  direct
     6  result of such crime;
     7    §  2.  Section  624  of  the  executive law is amended by adding a new
     8  subdivision 1-a to read as follows:
     9    1-a. For the purposes of this  section,  "domestic  partner"  means  a
    10  person who, with respect to another person:
    11    (a) is formally a party in a domestic partnership or similar relation-
    12  ship  with  the  other  person, entered into pursuant to the laws of the
    13  United States or of any state, local or foreign jurisdiction, or  regis-

         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
        SA                                                         LBD04517-02-9

        S. 1422--A                          2                         A. 4089--A
     1  tered  as  the  domestic  partner  of the other person with any registry
     2  maintained by the employer of either party or any  state,  municipality,
     3  or foreign jurisdiction; or
     4    (b)  is  formally  recognized as a beneficiary or covered person under
     5  the other person's employment benefits or health insurance; or
     6    (c) is dependent or mutually interdependent on the  other  person  for
     7  support,  as evidenced by the totality of the circumstances indicating a

     8  mutual intent to be a domestic partner including  but  not  limited  to:
     9  common  ownership  or joint leasing of real or personal property; common
    10  householding, shared income or  shared  expenses;  children  in  common;
    11  signs  of  intent  to marry or become a domestic partner under paragraph
    12  (a) or (b) of this subdivision; or the length of the personal  relation-
    13  ship of the persons.
    14    §  3.  Section  626  of  the  executive law is amended by adding a new
    15  subdivision 4 to read as follows:
    16    4. Out-of-pocket loss shall also include the cost  of  counseling  for
    17  surviving  family members of homicide victims who are otherwise eligible
    18  pursuant to paragraph (b) of subdivision  one  of  section  six  hundred
    19  twenty-four of this article.

    20    § 4. This act shall take effect on the one hundred eightieth day after
    21  it shall have become a law.
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