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Supreme Court sides with student in fight over service dog in school


The below blog post is by Autism Speaks Board Member, Gary Mayerson who is the founder of Mayerson & Associates, a Manhattan-based law firm founded in 2000 as the very first law firm in the nation dedicated to the representation of individuals with autism.

The United States Supreme Court has vacated and remanded the Sixth Circuit’s Decision in Fry v. Napoleon Community Schools, framing new standards and limits to the “exhaustion doctrine.” In general, the exhaustion doctrine had required that parents fully exhaust all their administrative remedies under IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) before asserting any “other” claims. That rule caused many claims to languish unaddressed.

Autism Speaks filed an amicus brief with the high court advocating for limits to the exhaustion doctrine so that important non-IDEA claims could be timely addressed and adjudicated. I attended the oral argument in my role as the Director of the Autism Speaks Federal Legal Appeals Project. Many thanks to Caroline Heller and her colleagues at Greenberg Traurig for their excellent work on the amicus brief. I also want to recognize the contributions of my Senior Counsel, Jean Marie Brescia.

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