New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

MIRANDA v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2004-009-71, Claim No. NONE, Motion No. M-68760


Claimant's application seeking permission to serve and file a late claim was granted.

Case Information

Claimant short name:
Footnote (claimant name) :

Footnote (defendant name) :

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
Motion number(s):
Cross-motion number(s):

Claimant's attorney:
BY: Glenn R. Meyers, Esq.,Of counsel.
Defendant's attorney:
Attorney General
BY: Ed J. Thompson, Esq.,
Assistant Attorney GeneralOf Counsel.
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
October 26, 2004

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)


Claimant has brought this motion seeking permission to serve and file a late claim.

The following papers were considered by the Court in connection with this motion:
Notice of Motion, Attorney's Affidavit, Proposed Claim 1,2,3

Correspondence dated August 12, 2004 from Ed J. Thompson, Esq., Assistant Attorney General 4

In his proposed claim, claimant seeks damages for personal injuries suffered by him on July 6, 2003, when he was incarcerated at Willard Correctional Facility. On the day in question, claimant was participating in certain outdoor functions on an excessively hot day, and alleges that he became sick, lost consciousness and collapsed due to inadequate medical attention from personnel at the facility.

Defendant has not opposed the relief sought herein.

In order to determine an application for permission to serve and file a late claim, the Court must consider, among other relevant factors, the six factors set forth in § 10(6) of the Court of Claims Act. The factors set forth therein are: (1) whether the delay in filing the claim was excusable; (2) whether the State had notice of the essential facts constituting the claim; (3) whether the State had an opportunity to investigate the circumstances underlying the claim; (4) whether the claim appears meritorious; (5) whether substantial prejudice resulted from the failure to timely file and the failure to serve upon the Attorney General a timely claim or notice of intention to file a claim; and (6) whether any other remedy is available. The Court is afforded considerable discretion in determining whether to permit the late filing of a claim (see, Matter of Gavigan v State of New York, 176 AD2d 1117).

Claimant has provided no explanation whatsoever as to why he did not timely institute a claim seeking damages for his injuries.

The factors of notice, opportunity to investigate, and substantial prejudice will be considered together. Since claimant was an inmate at the time of this incident, and subsequently received medical attention at the facility for his injuries, the State received prompt and timely notice of the incident, and was provided with an opportunity to timely investigate the circumstances. Although not submitted with this application, the Court also believes that an injury report would have been generated, and this report, together with claimant's medical records, will insure that the State will not be prejudiced should it have to defend this claim.

The next factor, often deemed the most critical, is whether the proposed claim has the appearance of merit. If claimant cannot establish a meritorious claim, it would be an exercise in futility to grant a late claim application (Savino v State of New York, 199 AD2d 254; Prusack v State of New York, 117 AD2d 729). In order to establish a meritorious cause of action, claimant has the burden to show that the proposed claim is not patently groundless, frivolous, or legally defective, and that there is reasonable cause to believe that a valid claim exists (Matter of Santana v New York State Thruway Authority, 92 Misc 2d 1).

In this case, the allegations set forth in the claim are sufficient, for purposes of this application only, to establish the appearance of a meritorious claim based upon negligence against the State.

From the papers submitted, it does not appear that claimant has any other available remedy.

Therefore, after a review of the papers submitted herein, and after weighing and considering all of the factors set forth under Court of Claims Act § 10(6), it is the opinion of this Court that claimant should be allowed to serve and file his proposed claim.

Accordingly, it is

ORDERED, that Motion No. M-68760 is hereby GRANTED, and claimant is directed to file and serve his proposed claim, properly verified, within 45 days from the date of filing of this decision and order in the Clerk's office, with such service and filing to be in accordance with the Court of Claims Act, with particular reference to Sections 10, 11 and 11-a, and the Uniform Rules for the Court of Claims.

October 26, 2004
Syracuse, New York

Judge of the Court of Claims