New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

YOUNGBLOOD v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2005-019-560, Claim No. 108273, Motion No. M-70483


Synopsis


Claimant's motion to compel production of copies of DOCS directives is denied.

Case Information

UID:
2005-019-560
Claimant(s):
ANTHONY YOUNGBLOOD
Claimant short name:
YOUNGBLOOD
Footnote (claimant name) :

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

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
108273
Motion number(s):
M-70483
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
FERRIS D. LEBOUS
Claimant's attorney:
ANTHONY YOUNGBLOOD, 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:
August 24, 2005
City:
Binghamton
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

Claimant, an inmate proceeding pro se, moves for an order directing the defendant to produce for discovery and inspection certain New York State Department of Correctional Services directives identified in prior discovery demands. The State of New York (hereinafter "State") opposes the motion.

Claimant served a Renewed Discovery Demand upon the Office of the Attorney General dated December 10, 2004. In said demand, claimant requested the production of, among other things, the State Department of Correctional Services (hereinafter "DOCS") directives numbered 2121, 4064, 4066 and 4067. The State served claimant with a Response to Renewed Demands for Discovery dated May 20, 2005, in which the State indicated that each of said directives would be produced upon payment in advance by claimant of the photocopying costs associated with each directive.


Claimant avers that he was granted poor person status which is incorrect. (Claimant's affidavit, ¶ 2). While 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), such is not the equivalent of poor person status under CPLR 1101. (Youngblood v State of New York, Ct Cl, September 29, 2003, Sise, J., Claim No. 108273). It is well-settled that the State has the right to require claimant to pay reasonable photocopying costs of demanded discovery documents. (Gittens v State of New York, 175 AD2d 530). As such, the fact that claimant avows to be impoverished because he is incarcerated entitles him to no greater rights than a non-prisoner pro se litigant who does not have the funds to carry out all the normal steps of litigation, including discovery. (Id.). There is no general provision which requires the State to pay the litigation expenses in claims brought against it and the State has the right to require claimant to pay reasonable photocopying costs of demanded discovery documents. (Id.). Consequently, the court finds that the State's Response to Renewed Demands for Discovery is proper.


Accordingly, in view of the foregoing, it is ORDERED that claimant's motion to compel discovery, Motion No. M-70483, is DENIED.



August 24, 2005
Binghamton, New York

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


The court has considered the following papers in connection with this motion:
  1. Claim, filed September 12, 2003.
  2. ORDER, Sise, J., Claim No. 108273, filed September 29, 2003.
  3. Verified Answer, filed September 15, 2003.
  4. Renewed Discovery Demand, filed December 15, 2004.
  5. Response to Renewed Demands for Discovery, filed May 23, 2005.
  6. "Motion to Seek State Directives Copied and Sent to Claimant", Motion No. M-70483, dated June 28, 2005, and filed July 5, 2005.
  7. Affidavit of Anthony Youngblood, in support of motion, undated and unsworn to.
  8. Affirmation of Joseph F. Romani, AAG, in opposition to motion, dated July 8, 2005, and filed July 11, 2005