Can I request a review of the investigator's finding that I am an "abuser"?
Yes, you can file a Petition for Review. After you have reviewed all of the information in the notification package (cover letter, Investigation Report, and instructions for filing a Petition for Review), if you believe that the investigator's finding is inaccurate, you may file a petition for Review with the DPPC.
Is there any way I can get an Extension of the Due Date if I need it?
An extension will only be granted when there are extenuating circumstances that prevented your Petition from being filed within the regulatory timeframe.
If you believe you have good cause to request an extension, you must submit your extension request in writing to the DPPC Executive Director. You must present your reason for requesting an extension of time in a clear and concise way. If an extension is granted, a new due date for filing your Petition will be established; and you will be notified in writing of the new date. You must file your Petition for Review by the new due date. No further extensions will be granted.
What are the "Grounds" for filing a Petition for Review?
The only grounds for filing a Petition for Review are:
- The investigation report is based on an investigation which was not conducted in accordance with 118 CMR 5.02 (1)
- There is not sufficient evidence to support the conclusions reached in the investigation report
- The investigation report fails to reach conclusions supported by the majority of the evidence
What should I include with my Petition for review?
You should follow the instructions you received in the mail from the DPPC.
You can also include copies of any other paperwork, documents, photos or statements that you think will help change the conclusion reached by the investigator. Do NOT send originals as they will not be returned to you.
If there are witnesses that you think should have been interviewed during the investigation and who were not interviewed include the name, address and telephone number for each such person. Also, explain what information they would have testified to that would have made a difference in the conclusion reached by the investigator.
How long will it take to get a Decision on my Petition for Review?
Because of the large number of Petitions received by DPPC and the limited number of staff available to complete them, the Review process may take years to complete.
What happens after I get the Review Decision in the mail?
Once completed, you will receive the original Review Decision in the mail, signed by the DPPC Executive Director. If the investigator's finding of abuse is upheld, the decision will say that the conclusion of abuse is "affirmed;" if it is not upheld, the decision will say that the conclusion of abuse is "reversed."
Can I appeal to anyone else if I am dissatisfied with the Review Decision?
No. Per applicable state law, DPPC decisions are not subject to further judicial review.