New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

JACKSON v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2002-032-035, Claim No. 102670, Motion No. M-66084


Synopsis



Case Information

UID:
2002-032-035
Claimant(s):
AZARIAH SEVEN, a/k/a JOE JACKSON
Claimant short name:
JACKSON
Footnote (claimant name) :

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

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
102670
Motion number(s):
M-66084
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
JUDITH A. HARD
Claimant's attorney:
Azariah Seven, a/k/a Joe Jackson, Pro Se
Defendant's attorney:
Hon. Eliot Spitzer, Esq., NYS Attorney General
By: Kevan J. Acton, Esq., Assistant Attorney GeneralOf Counsel
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
February 24, 2003
City:
Albany
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

Claimant seeks an order of the Court appointing counsel to represent him in this action. A court's ability to appoint counsel to represent a civil litigant is available only in connection with an order granting a litigant permission to proceed as a poor person (CPLR 1101, 1102). If considered as a poor person motion, the instant motion is technically defective in that the County Attorney for the county in which the claim arose was not served. The Court will nevertheless address the substance of claimant's request for relief.
The claim in this action alleges that claimant was injured when he was assaulted by another inmate of Upstate Correctional Facility in April 2000. The State's liability for
this injury is alleged to stem from its inadequate supervision of the inmates in the facility and its failure to provide claimant with appropriate medical care after he was injured.
Claimant's request for reduction of the filing fee has already been addressed in the Order of Presiding Judge Susan Phillips Read, issued July 17, 2000. Thus, the only relief available under CPLR 1102 that claimant can be seeking at this juncture is the assignment of an attorney, 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 (Morgenthau v Garcia, 148 Misc 2d 900; Harris v State of New York, Claim No. 80949, Motion No. M-42854, filed Oct. 2, 1990, Benza, J.). 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).
Notwithstanding the technical defect in claimant's motion, his request to be granted poor person status and for the appointment of counsel has been considered on the merits and is denied.


February 24, 2003
Albany, New York

HON. JUDITH A. HARD
Judge of the Court of Claims


The following papers were read on claimant's motion appointing counsel to represent him:
1. Notice of Motion and Supporting Affirmation of Azariah Seven, pro se

2. Affirmation in Opposition of Kevan J. Acton, AAG

Filed papers: Claim