New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

SAIF’UL’BAIT v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2006-044-512, Claim No. 109838, Motion No. M-72395


Inmate’s claim for wrongful confinement dismissed due to untimely filing and service.

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:
Defendant’s attorney:
HON. ELIOT SPITZER, ATTORNEY GENERALBY: Carol A. Cocchiola, Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant’s attorney:

Signature date:
October 30, 2006

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)

Defendant State of New York (“defendant”) moves to dismiss this claim on the ground that it was not timely filed pursuant to the provisions of the Court of Claims Act § 10. Claimant, an inmate proceeding pro se, opposes the motion.
Claimant alleges that he was wrongfully confined for eighteen days as the result of a retaliatory misbehavior report issued by a prison officer during his incarceration at Elmira Correctional Facility. Claimant indicates that he was released from confinement on March 16, 2004.[1] Accordingly, his claim accrued on that date (see Ramirez v State of New York, 171 Misc 2d 677, 679-680).
Court of Claims Act § 10 (3-b) requires that in an action to recover damages for personal injuries caused by the intentional tort of an officer or employee of the State, the claim must be filed with the Clerk of the Court and served upon the Attorney General within ninety days after the accrual of the claim, unless a notice of intention to file a claim is served upon the Attorney General within ninety days after the accrual of such claim. Because the claim accrued on March 16, 2004, either a claim must have been filed and served, or a notice of intention must have been served, by June 14, 2004.
Claimant filed his claim with the Clerk of the Court on September 13, 2004, and served both the claim and a notice of intention on the Attorney General's office on August 26, 2004.[2] Neither the filing nor the service of the claim were timely, and the service of the notice of intention was untimely as well. Defendant properly asserted the affirmative defense of claimant's failure to timely serve and file the claim in its answer.[3]
Claimant contends in his response to the motion that his filing and service was timely, in that he received notification that his administrative grievance appeal was denied on June 1, 2004, and that he filed and served his claim within 90 days of that date. Claimant is apparently confusing the filing and service requirements pertaining to wrongful confinement[4] with those pertaining to the loss of an inmate's personal property. In inmate personal property loss claims, the claimant must exhaust all available administrative remedies prior to filing his claim.[5] No such requirement pertains to claims for wrongful confinement.
Claimant's failure to comply with the filing and service requirements set forth in Sections 10 and 11 of the Court of Claims Act is jurisdictional in nature, and these requirements must be strictly construed (Finnerty v New York State Thruway Auth., 75 NY2d 721, 722). Failure to comply mandates dismissal (Lichtenstein v State of New York, 93 NY2d 911).
The claim is therefore dismissed.
October 30, 2006
Binghamton, New York
Judge of the Court of Claims
The following papers were read on Defendant’s motion to dismiss:
(1) Notice of Motion filed October 13, 2006, Affirmation of Carol A. Cocchiola, AAG dated October 11, 2006 with annexed Exhibits A through C.
(2) Claimant’s Opposition to Motion filed October 20, 2006, Claimant’s Affidavit dated October 16, 2006 with annexed Exhibits A through C.
Filed papers: Claim filed September 13, 2004; Verified Answer filed October 1, 2004.

[1]. Claim, ¶ 8.
[2]. ¶ 7, Affidavit of Carol A. Cocciola, AAG, in support of motion to dismiss.
[3]. Verified Answer, ¶ 6.
[4]. Court of Claims Act § 10 (3-b).
[5]. Court of Claims Act § 10 (9).