New York State Closes Portal for ERAP Applications. What’s Next for Landlords?

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The New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) announced that the application portal for the state’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) will close on January 20, 2023.


ERAP was created to provide financial relief for tenants who could not pay their rent due to COVID-19 related economic hardships. The program, which started in June 2021, has distributed over $2 billion in payments to landlords. While ERAP provided welcome relief for some tenants and landlords, the program has also had significantly detrimental consequences for property owners across New York State.

The Buffalo News Reports on Man Cleared of Criminally Negligent Homicide Charges

The Buffalo News recently published a report regarding a man, represented by defense attorneys Barry N. Covert and Justin D. Ginter, who was cleared of criminally negligent homicide charges.

As reported by The Buffalo News, Donald Lewinski was charged with criminally negligent homicide following a 2020 altercation with another patron at a restaurant in West Seneca, NY. During the confrontation, Mr. Lewinski pushed the other patron who fell, hit his head, and subsequently passed away.

The Buffalo News article states “Covert, who worked with fellow attorney Justin D. Ginter on the case, said his office wrote a long letter to the prosecution laying the grounds for a self-defense claim.”

Jury Verdict of $65 Million Awarded to Woman Abused by YMCA Counselor

Attorney Amy C. Keller, of Lipsitz Green Scime Cambria, recently obtained a $65 million jury verdict for her client, who was sexually abused as a child by a former YMCA counselor.

In a front-page story, The Buffalo News reported that the $65 million award is the third significant jury verdict Ms. Keller has obtained this year, on behalf of her clients who were victims of childhood sexual abuse. In recent months, Ms. Keller has also obtained a $30 million jury verdict on behalf of a client abused by a Lutheran pastor and a $25 million jury verdict on behalf of a client abused by a former Boy Scout leader. All three cases were reported as the largest award obtained in Western New York for a case filed under the Child Victims Act, at the time the verdicts were rendered.