New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

HENRIQUEZ v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2003-019-544, Claim No. 104256, Motion No. M-66724


Synopsis


Claimant's motion for assignment of counsel is denied.

Case Information

UID:
2003-019-544
Claimant(s):
MIKE HENRIQUEZ
Claimant short name:
HENRIQUEZ
Footnote (claimant name) :

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

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
104256
Motion number(s):
M-66724
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
FERRIS D. LEBOUS
Claimant's attorney:
MIKE HENRIQUEZ, PRO SE
Defendant's attorney:
HON. ELIOT SPITZER, ATTORNEY GENERALBY: Joseph F. Romani, Assistant Attorney General, of counsel
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:

City:
Binghamton
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

Claimant, an inmate appearing pro se, moves for an order providing him poor person status and assigning counsel to assist him in litigating this matter pursuant to CPLR 1101, as well as an "imposition of discovery fees and costs against the County of Chemung". (Notice of Motion). The State of New York (hereinafter "State") opposes the motion.


The Court has considered the following papers in connection with this motion:
  1. Claim, filed May 9, 2001.
  2. ORDER, Read, P.J., Claim No. 104256, filed May 23, 2001.
  3. Notice of Motion No. M-66724, dated April 11, 2003.
  4. Affidavit of Mike Henriquez, in support of motion, sworn to April 11, 2003.
  5. Affirmation of Joseph F. Romani, AAG, in opposition to motion, dated April 30, 2003, and filed May 2, 2003.
An Order has previously been issued by this Court reducing the filing fee for this Claimant to $30.00 pursuant to Court of Claims Act 11-a (1). (Henriquez v State of New York, Ct Cl, May 23, 2001, Read, P, J., Claim No. 104256). The remainder of Claimant's request must be denied. Additionally, since the filing fee has already been addressed, prosecuting the matter in this Court does not require Claimant to pay any further costs or fees. To the extent Claimant may need to mail papers to the State or the Court, limited free postage is available at the correctional facility, as well as advances for legal mail if the inmate has insufficient funds.


It is well-settled that the appointment of counsel is discretionary in civil matters. (Matter of Smiley, 36 NY2d 433, 438). Generally, counsel will not routinely be assigned except in a proper case, such as one involving "grievous forfeiture or loss of a fundamental right". (Morgenthau v Garcia, 148 Misc 2d 900, 903). A review of the pleadings before the Court in this case reveals a case of average complexity. In sum, this matter fails to rise to the level warranting assignment of counsel. Consequently, the Court declines to exercise its discretionary authority on this matter.


To the extent that Claimant seeks relief against the County of Chemung this Court lacks jurisdiction against such entity. (CCA 9).


In view of the foregoing, it is ORDERED, that Claimant's motion, Motion No. M-66724, is DENIED.



Binghamton, New York

HON. FERRIS D. LEBOUS
Judge of the Court of Claims