New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

ELNANDEZ v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2000-001-027, Claim No. 101909, Motion No. M-61332


Synopsis



Case Information

UID:
2000-001-027
Claimant(s):
ANDRE ELNANDEZ
Claimant short name:
ELNANDEZ
Footnote (claimant name) :

Defendant(s):
THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Footnote (defendant name) :

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
101909
Motion number(s):
M-61332
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
susan phillips read
Claimant's attorney:
Andre Elnandez, Pro Se
Defendant's attorney:
Hon. Eliot Spitzer, NYS Attorney GeneralBy: Michael W. Friedman, Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
June 26, 2000
City:
Albany
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

The following papers were read and considered on claimant's motion for permission to proceed as a poor person: Petition for Assignment of Counsel, undated and filed March 8, 2000; Affidavit of Andre Elnandez, pro se, dated December 14, 1999 and filed March 8, 2000; Affidavit in Opposition of Michael Friedman, Esq., AAG, dated March 10 and filed March 10, 2000; the claim, undated and filed February 4, 2000; and Fee Reduction Order, issued February 24, 2000.

Claimant Andre Elnandez ("claimant") seeks leave to proceed as a poor person pursuant to CPLR 1101. Although his motion is technically defective because the County Attorney for the county in which the claim arose was not served, the Court will nevertheless address the substance of the request for relief.
The claim in this action alleges that employees of defendant State of New York provided negligent supervision, which allowed another inmate to assault claimant. Claimant is now seeking the assignment of counsel who would serve without compensation.[*] The appointment of counsel in a case such as this, where there is no threat that claimant is about to be deprived of a liberty or suffer a grievous forfeiture, is neither statutorily nor constitutionally required (Harris v State of New York, Ct Cl, filed Oct. 2, 1990, Benza, J., Claim No. 80949, Motion No. M-42854; Johnson v State of New York, Ct Cl, filed Sept. 13, 1989, Margolis, I., J., Motion No. M-40809). Furthermore, this claim is not of sufficient complexity and does not involve such fundamental rights that the Court would be justified in exercising its discretion to appoint an attorney to appear without compensation (see, Matter of Smiley, 36 NY2d 433; Jacox v Jacox, 43 AD2d 716).
The technical defects in claimant's motion are therefore immaterial, as his request to be granted poor person status and to have counsel assigned to represent him would in any event be denied.

June 26, 2000
Albany, New York

HON. SUSAN PHILLIPS READ
Judge of the Court of Claims




[*] Claimant was previously granted a reduction in the Court's filing fee (Fee Reduction Order, issued February 24, 2000)