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Unequal Access To Justice: Solla V. Berlin And The Unprincipled Evisceration Of New York’S Eaja, Armen H. Merjian Nov 2015

Unequal Access To Justice: Solla V. Berlin And The Unprincipled Evisceration Of New York’S Eaja, Armen H. Merjian

Pace Law Review

Solla is noteworthy not merely in light of the baleful effects of its ruling, but because of its reasoning: it is categorically wrong. The decision wholly elides a cornerstone and settled principle of New York welfare law, namely, that in the administration of public assistance, the municipalities act as the agents of the State, while blatantly violating the most fundamental of agency principles, namely, that a principal is vicariously liable for the actions of its agent acting within the scope of its authority. Indeed, this principal/agent relationship is established both by statute and by decades of uniform state and federal …