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Access-A-Ride Customer Bill of Rights

Updated May 28, 2024

The Customer Bill of Rights was last updated May 28, 2024.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) is dedicated to delivering safe, reliable and efficient public transportation, which includes New York City Transit’s Access-A-Ride (AAR) Paratransit Service. AAR is a shared-ride, origin-to-destination paratransit service that is provided in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) for persons whose disabilities prevent the use of NYC Transit public buses or subways.

The purpose of this document is to clearly set forth AAR’s current standards for providing excellent service to AAR customers.*

In Eligibility Determinations, Customers Have The Right To:

  • Request and receive eligibility-related communications in a preferred language
  • Participate in an eligibility process that is fair and objective
  • Confidentiality regarding documentation and conversations
  • Submit relevant documentation from their own health care providers
  • Receive copies of their assessment records within 30 days of their requests
  • Appeal eligibility decisions in writing or in person up to 60 days after the decision
  • Challenge an appeal denial in the New York State Supreme Court

In Scheduling, Customers Have The Right To:

  • Obtain current and complete information regarding AAR procedures and policies in a preferred language
  • Have AAR answer their calls courteously and promptly
  • Have AAR communicate in a preferred language 
  • Request a later pick-up from an appointment where AAR dropped them off earlier the same day
  • Speak to a supervisor
  • Confidentiality of the entire scheduling procedure
  • Reserve travel with one guest – whether or not the customer is traveling with an authorized personal care attendant – and additional guests if capacity permits

In Boarding and Travelling On AAR Vehicles, Customers Are Entitled To:

  • Safe, prompt and reliable service
  • Be ready to board only at the scheduled reservation time, and not in advance of it, unless the customer is present and ready to travel
  • Efficient rides with trips that do not exceed AAR’s Maximum Ride Times
  • Wait inside until the vehicle arrives
  • Pick-ups within 30 minutes after the scheduled reservation time
  • Authorization to use a taxi if a pick-up is unreasonably delayed beyond the 30-minute window, with AAR to reimburse the customer
  • Travel with service animals at no cost to the customer
  • Utilize the lift, as requested, curbside, and not in the middle of the street
  • Decide whether to face forward or backward when boarding/riding vehicles using a wheelchair or scooter
  • Travel with an authorized Personal Care Attendant at no cost to the customer

Customers Have The Right To AAR Drivers Who:

  • Are professional, courteous, and respectful
  • Received training, under supervision, to meet the travel requirements of customers
  • Call out the name of the customer upon arrival at the pick-up location
  • Wait five (5) minutes after a scheduled pick-up time, unless contact is made with the customer, in which case the driver will wait an additional five (5) minutes
  • Provide assistance door-to-door, curb-to-curb and into and out of vehicles as needed, including assistance with fastening seatbelts, securing wheelchairs, oxygen bottles and other devices, and carrying up to two bags/parcels totaling 40 lbs. or less on/off the vehicle
  • Are fully trained on every component of the vehicle, including the lift, air conditioner and heating
  • Respond to customer inquiries, including advising of the approximate arrival time and number of pick-ups, opening or closing windows, and turning on or off air conditioning and heat
  • Respond to a medical emergency by pulling the vehicle out of traffic and notifying dispatch and/or calling 911
  • Turn off their phones, and refrain from talking on the phone, while driving

Customers Have The Right To AAR Vehicles That Are:

  • Properly equipped and have been inspected for safety
  • Checked every day to ensure maximum working order of all functions in the vehicle
  • Clean and odorless, with clean seats and straps, and a smoke free environment
  • Equipped with adequately functioning heating and air conditioning

Customers Have The Right To File A Complaint And The Right To:

  • Be heard by phone, letter or email in their preferred language
  • Receive a response to their complaint, in their preferred language, within 21 business days of submitting the complaint
  • Be free from retaliation
  • AAR management investigating and acting on all complaints where appropriate
  • AAR management identifying and correcting systemic issues that negatively impact service standards
  • AAR management proactively seeking and evaluating opportunities to improve customer service

* When AAR customers take trips in taxis or for-hire vehicles through AAR’s taxi authorization program or on-demand e-hail pilot program, the trips are not subject to the service requirements of ADA complementary paratransit. Please note that such trips in taxis and for-hire vehicles are subject to other ADA provisions and the rules of the NYC TLC regarding accessible service. For more information on your rights while on board taxis and for-hire vehicles, please see the New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission’s passenger information publications.

For any questions, comments or concerns pertaining to the AAR Customer Bill of Rights, please contact us by using one of the following methods:

  • Call: 877-337-2017 to speak with a representative who handles paratransit issues from 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Monday – Friday. Deaf/hard of hearing customers: use your preferred relay service provider or the free 711 relay service to reach 877-337-2017.
  • Write: MTA New York City Transit, Paratransit Division, Customer Relations, 130 Livingston Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201.
  • Email: Use our online reporting system.