New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

GREEN v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2001-011-599, Claim No. 101171, Motion No. M-63807


Synopsis


Defendant's motion for a protective order with respect to interrogatories served by claimant is denied.

Case Information

UID:
2001-011-599
Claimant(s):
SHAWN GREEN
Claimant short name:
GREEN
Footnote (claimant name) :

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

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
101171
Motion number(s):
M-63807
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
THOMAS J. McNAMARA
Claimant's attorney:
Shawn Green, Pro Se
Defendant's attorney:
Honorable Eliot Spitzer, Attorney General
By: Kevan J. Acton, Esq.,Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
October 31, 2001
City:
Saratoga Springs
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision


In this action for medical malpractice, defendant has moved for a protective order with respect to interrogatories served by claimant. The interrogatories are objected to on the bases that they are addressed to an individual employee rather than to the defendant party and that some of the interrogatories seek expert opinion.

The interrogatories are addressed to a specifically identified nurse employed by defendant and defendant has objected on the basis that she is not the party. Under CPLR 3133 interrogatories are to be answered by the party served if an individual or if not an individual, by an officer, director, member, agent or employee having the information. Though the statute does not require that interrogatories be answered by a particular individual where the party is not an individual, the fact that the interrogatories are specifically addressed is not sufficient reason for excusing defendant from providing answers. The interrogatories should be treated as having been posed to defendant generally but concerning, where applicable, the actions of the individual to whom the interrogatories are addressed. The answers should be supplied, as the statute requires, by one having the information. Defendant is free to choose the appropriate individual or individuals.

Defendant has also raised as an objection that the interrogatories request answers that require an expert opinion. CPLR 3131 provides that interrogatories may relate to any matters embraced by the disclosure requirement of section 3101. Three of the interrogatories, numbers 16, 17 and 18, would require expert opinion. A party, however, is permitted to seek in the disclosure process expert opinion from another party on issues that bear on the controversy (Lingener v State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Company, 195 AD2d 838). Inasmuch as the interrogatories relate to issues in controversy, they are proper.

Based upon the foregoing, the motion is denied.


October 31, 2001
Saratoga Springs, New York

HON. THOMAS J. MCNAMARA
Judge of the Court of Claims



Papers Submitted:

  1. Notice of Motion dated July 18, 2001
  2. Affirmation in Support of Kevan J. Acton, Esq. dated July 18, 2001 with attachment
  3. Affidavit in Opposition of Shawn Green sworn to the 23rd day of July, 2001
  4. Notice of Objection of Kevan J. Acton, Esq. dated August 24, 2001