Bureaus of the County Attorney’s Office
The senior staff of the County Attorney’s Office is comprised of:
|Thomas A. Adams
|John L. Hiller
|Chief Deputy County Attorney
|Bureau Chief, Litigation and Appeals
|Bureau Chief, Property Assessment Litigation Bureau
|Section Chief, Labor
|Robert Van Der Waag
|Section Chief, Appeals
|Bureau Chief, Family Court
|Mary J. Nori
|Director of Internship, Externship & Continuing Legal Education Programs
|David J. DeBaun
|Bureau Chief, Municipal Transactions
|Bureau Chief, Legal Counsel
|Deputy Bureau Chief, Legal Counsel
|Chief Real Estate Negotiator
|David Z. Carl
|Bureau Chief, Social Services
This group serves as the chief policy making body of the County Attorney’s Office and coordinates and supervises the activities of the several bureaus.
Family Court Bureau
The Family Court Bureau is comprised of three units. Deputy County Attorneys (DCAs) conduct ongoing investigations, negotiate settlements, conduct pre-trial litigation, bench trials, post-dispositional litigation, and provide consultation services to Police, Probation and the Department of Social Services.
Child Neglect and Abuse Unit:
DCAs represent and advise DSS in Child Protective Proceedings including the most severe cases of child sexual and physical abuse. DCAs draft petitions, orders and motions pertaining to abused and neglected children. DCAs handle all phases of child welfare Court proceedings including pre-petition and post-petition applications for orders of protection, access orders, emergency removals, fact finding, dispositional as well as termination of parental rights proceedings when reunification cannot be achieved so that children can be adopted by loving families.
Juvenile Delinquency and PINS (Persons in Need of Supervision) Unit:
DCAs investigate and prosecute children over 7 and under age 18 who are arrested for the commission of criminal acts, advise the Nassau County Police Department in the processing and charging of juveniles, represent Probation in dispositional and post-dispositional proceedings, assist in the presentment of PINS petitions, assist OCFS in Court when extension of placement petitions are filed, and represent DSS in post-dispositional PINS and JD cases. DCAs are also responsible for all weekend and holiday Court coverage for juvenile arrests.
DCAs represent out-of-state agencies on behalf of custodial parents seeking to enforce or modify child support orders, represent DSS to establish paternity and seek child support orders from non-custodial parents in public assistance cases.
LITIGATION & APPEALS BUREAU
The Litigation & Appeals Bureau is comprised of four sections: (1) Litigation (2) Labor, (3) Early Case Assessment and Litigation Support, and (4) Appeals. Each section of the Litigation & Appeals Bureau focuses on specific aspects of litigation but also works in concert with each to achieve solid legal representation of the County and its departments/agencies.
This section handles the general litigation needs of the County in both state and federal court. The section handles civil rights and employment discrimination litigation as well as all personal injury cases ranging from routine slip-and-fall matters, to complex road design cases. The section handles breach of contract actions, pursues the county’s rights to defense and indemnification, defends the County from suits challenging State and County laws and regulations, including declaratory judgment actions and proceedings brought under Article 78. The section also pursues claims on behalf of the County and/or its agencies for damage to County property, facilities, and/or personnel.
This section defends the County against employment and labor law claims, as well as discrimination claims before federal, state, and local human rights tribunals. The section works closely with the Office of Labor Relations in defending the county against employment grievances and union arbitrations. This section provides advice and counsel to county departments on labor law and issues arising from collective bargaining agreements.
Early Case Assessment and Litigation Support Section:
This section focuses on early settlement of claims and risk management, assists Litigation Bureau in responding to discovery demands and investigation of cases and aggressively defends the County against claims of municipal liability through motion practice, depositions, all phases of discovery and at trial.
This section works closely with the other sections in the Litigation & Appeals. Members of this section appear and present oral arguments in appeals concerning issues of constitutional, administrative, employment, tax, tort, and social service law before the Appellate Division, Second Department, the New York State Court of Appeals, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, and other appellate courts.
MUNICIPAL FINANCE BUREAU
The Municipal Finance Bureau handles all budget and finance matters for the County, including the issuance of debt by the County or related entities such as the Nassau County Sewer and Storm Water Finance Authority.
MUNICIPAL TRANSACTIONS BUREAU
The Municipal Transactions Bureau serves as counsel to all divisions of the County on a broad range of contractual matters, including all types of real estate transactions, procurement contracts, concessions, and inter-municipal agreements. The Bureau also represents the County in bankruptcy and real estate-related litigation, serves as counsel to the Planning Commission, the Nassau County Land Bank, and the Nassau County Deferred Compensation Board, and represents the County in condemnation proceedings.
The Bureau also drafts diverse inter-municipal and agreements with non-for profit groups, including park transfer, sewer consolidation, road improvement, and park management and support agreements, all to share resources, create operating efficiencies and improve public assets and services.
The Bureau also handles all condemnation proceedings and acquisitions of property on behalf of the County of Nassau.
LEGAL COUNSEL BUREAU
Members of the Bureau draft and comment on state and local legislation and counsel agencies on the implementation of state and local laws. The Bureau also drafts formal and informal opinions regarding the County Charter, the County Administrative Code, the Freedom of Information Law, privacy issues, First Amendment issues, and such other areas of state and federal law as requested and directed.
PROPERTY ASSESSMENT LITIGATION BUREAU
The Bureau handles special proceedings brought pursuant to Real Property Tax Law for commercial and residential properties in state court. The bureau also defends and litigates all issues relating to property assessment, such as tax exemption issues, restoration of taxes, Article 78 petitions and corrections of errors.
SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS UNIT
This unit investigates Workers’ Compensation claims, selected tort claims, and waste, fraud, abuse allegations related to County employees and property, and reported workplace violence incidents. The unit actively works with the Litigation Bureau, Department of Social Services and Family Court bureaus.
Agency Counsel are Deputy County Attorneys assigned to work with and act as agency counsel for agencies and departments throughout the County. There are Deputy County Attorneys assigned to the Department of Social Services, Department of Human Services, Department of Assessment, Department of Consumer Affairs, Office of Labor Relations, and Office of Management & Budget. Deputy County Attorneys may sit with these departments, but they are responsible to the County Attorney.
DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES BUREAU
The DSS Bureau is comprised of attorneys assigned to DSS from the County Attorney’s Office and attorneys who work directly for DSS. No matter where they come from, attorneys in the Legal Services Department serve as in-house counsel to the Department of Social Services. In this capacity, they represent the agency in judicial proceedings and administrative forums. Attorneys provide legal support to the Office of the Commissioner, the Department’s administration, the directors of each division within the agency (and to staff) making sure that Department policy is in compliance with Federal, State and local law.
DSS Legal Bureau Attorneys are responsible for providing legal counsel and representation to the following program areas:
- Adult Protective Services;
- Services to Children and Families;
- Foster Care;
- Child Protective Services;
- Day Care and Employment;
- Special Investigations;
- Medicaid and Medical Assistance;
- Resources and Recoveries;
- Public Assistance;
- Housing and Homeless Prevention;
- DSS Internal Labor and Human Resources.
Thomas A. Adams
Office of the County Attorney
One West Street
Mineola, New York 11501
Monday - Friday
9:00 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.