New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

FILES v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2000-015-107, Claim No. 101936, Motion No. M-62434


Synopsis


Inmate claim seeking money damages for personal injury arising from ingestion of vitamins provided by prison personnel dismissed for failure to comply with service requirement of Court of Claims Act § 11(a).

Case Information

UID:
2000-015-107
Claimant(s):
EDDIE FILES
Claimant short name:
FILES
Footnote (claimant name) :

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

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
101936
Motion number(s):
M-62434
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
FRANCIS T. COLLINS
Claimant's attorney:
Eddie Files, Pro SeNo Appearance
Defendant's attorney:
Honorable Eliot Spitzer, Attorney General
By: Joel L. Marmelstein, EsquireAssistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
December 12, 2000
City:
Saratoga Springs
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

The defendant's motion to dismiss the claim for failure to comply with the service and filing requirements contained in Court of Claims Act § § 10 and 11 is granted. Claimant seeks to recover money damages for personal injuries resulting from the ingestion of vitamins which he alleges were wrongfully dispensed by the defendant's employees at the Marcy Correctional Facility. Claimant alleges that he consumed the vitamins prescribed for him between June 24, 1999 and July 24, 1999 and that the vitamins had a deleterious effect upon his health. Claimant further alleges in the claim that a "Notice of Intention to file this claim was filed in the office of the Attorney General on the 31 day of Jan., 2000." The prayer for relief seeks compensation for his injury and the appointment of counsel to represent him[1].

The defendant seeks dismissal on two grounds. First, that the Court lacks jurisdiction in that the claim and notice of intention to file a claim were served by regular mail and not personally or by certified mail, return receipt requested, as required by Court of Claims Act § 11 (a). Second, the defendant argues that neither the claim nor the notice of intention to file a claim, both of which were received by the Attorney General on February 11, 2000, were served within the time periods provided therefor in Court of Claims Act § 10. Claimant has not opposed the motion.

It is well established that "[t]he notice of claim requirements in Court of Claims Act § § 10 and 11 are jurisdictional prerequisites to the maintenance of a claim and must be strictly construed" (Phillips v State of New York, 237 AD2d 590, 591; Cannon v State of New York , 163 Misc 2d 623). Service of the claim and/or notice of intention to file a claim upon the Attorney General by regular mail, as evidenced by a copy of the mailing envelope used by the claimant, rather than personally or by certified mail, return receipt requested is insufficient to acquire jurisdiction over the State requiring the granting of the dismissal motion (see, Philippe v State of New York, 248 AD2d 827). Moreover, claimant's failure to serve a notice of intention to file a claim or serve and file a claim within 90 days of the claim's accrual as required by Court of Claims Act § 10(3) deprives the Court of jurisdiction to adjudicate this matter (State of New York v Dewey, 260 AD2d 924, 925; Nish v Town of Poestenkill, 179 AD2d 929, 930).

Since the claimant failed to serve and file his claim within 90 days of its accrual on July 24, 1999 and failed to serve the claim or notice of intention to file a claim either personally or by certified mail, return receipt requested, this Court lacks jurisdiction to proceed and the claim is, therefore, dismissed.

December 12, 2000
Saratoga Springs, New York

HON. FRANCIS T. COLLINS
Judge of the Court of Claims


The Court considered the following papers:
  1. Pre-answer motion to dismiss claim dated September 13, 2000;
  2. Affirmation of Joel L. Marmelstein dated September 13, 2000 with exhibits.

[1]Claimant's requests for poor person relief and for assignment of an attorney were addressed in prior orders of this Court. The filing fee was reduced to $15.00 by order of the Honorable Susan Phillips Read dated February 29, 2000. This Court considered and denied claimant's request for counsel in a decision and order dated May 11, 2000.