A.Y. v. Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare, Allegheny County Children & Youth Services

537 Pa. 116, 641 A.2d 1148 (1994)

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A.Y. v. Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare, Allegheny County Children & Youth Services

Pennsylvania Supreme Court
537 Pa. 116, 641 A.2d 1148 (1994)

Facts

A.Y. (defendant) babysat L.K., a three-year-old child. The next day, L.K. allegedly told her mother that A.Y. had licked L.K.’s genitals and buttocks. In an interview with two social workers, L.K. allegedly repeated her statement and demonstrated the action on a doll. A social worker who worked for the Alleghany County Children and Youth Services Office (the agency) (plaintiff) interviewed A.Y., who denied the allegations. The social worker surmised that A.Y. had abused L.K. and placed A.Y.’s name on the state child-abuse registry. A.Y. attempted to have her name expunged from the registry, and the agency refused. A.Y. appealed to the Commonwealth Department of Public Welfare Office of Hearings and Appeals. At the hearing, the agency’s evidence included L.K.’s hearsay statements to her mother and two social workers. The hearing officer disregarded A.Y.’s testimony, witness testimony, and other evidence. Relying solely on L.K.’s hearsay statements, the hearing officer found that there was substantial evidence in support of placing A.Y.’s name on the registry and denied her appeal. After exhausting her administrative remedies, A.Y. appealed to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Montemuro, J.)

Concurrence (Castille, J.)

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