New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

HAYES v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2005-033-101, Claim No. 109900, Motion No. M-69235


Synopsis



Case Information

UID:
2005-033-101
Claimant(s):
SIDNEY HAYES
Claimant short name:
HAYES
Footnote (claimant name) :

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

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
109900
Motion number(s):
M-69235
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
James J. Lack
Claimant's attorney:
Sidney Hayes, Pro Se
Defendant's attorney:
Eliot Spitzer, New York State Attorney GeneralBy: Saul Aronson, Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
March 18, 2005
City:
Hauppauge
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

This claim is brought by Sidney Hayes (hereinafter "claimant") for negligence in ordering him to leave his dormitory when he had medical restrictions against leaving the building. Claimant is currently incarcerated in Clinton Correctional Facility, Dannemora, New York.
Claimant moves this Court to proceed as a poor person[1] and have all future costs and fees waived and an attorney appointed to prosecute his claim.[2] In opposition, the defendant argues that the Court does not have jurisdiction to appoint an attorney to the claimant.

Claimant is seeking the assignment of counsel 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 (Harris v State of New York, Ct Cl, filed Oct. 2, 1990, Benza, J., Claim No. 80949, Motion No. M-42854; Johnson v State of New York, Ct Cl, filed Sept. 13, 1989, Margolis, I., J., Motion No. M-40809). 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). In addition, in matters such as the instant case, attorneys typically work on a contingent fee basis. In such a case, the attorney would be paid through a portion of the proceeds obtained through counsel.

Claimant's motion for an attorney is denied.

Based upon the foregoing, claimant's motion is denied.


March 18, 2005
Hauppauge, New York

HON. JAMES J. LACK
Judge of the Court of Claims




[1]The following papers have been read and considered on claimant's motion: Affidavit in Support of Application Pursuant to CPLR 1101(f) sworn to on August 24, 2004 and filed September 27, 2004; Affirmation in Opposition to Petition to Proceed in Forma Pauperis of Saul Aronson, Esq. dated November 5, 2004 and filed November 8, 2004.
[2]The portion of the motion to allow claimant to proceed as a poor person was previously decided by Presiding Judge Richard E. Sise on October 6, 2004.