New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

SHERIDAN v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2007-028-525, Claim No. 110106, Motion No. M-72534


Synopsis


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Case Information

UID:
2007-028-525
Claimant(s):
AUDREY SHERIDAN
Claimant short name:
SHERIDAN
Footnote (claimant name) :

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

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
110106
Motion number(s):
M-72534
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
RICHARD E. SISE
Claimant’s attorney:
STUART H. FINKELSTEIN & LORI KNIPEL, ESQS.
Defendant’s attorney:
HON. ANDREW M. CUOMO, ATTORNEY GENERAL
BY: Paul F. Cagino, Esq.Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant’s attorney:

Signature date:
March 2, 2007
City:
Albany
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

The following papers were read on the Court’s own motion for clarification regarding service of this claim:

1. Order to Show Cause, issued by the Court;


2. Affidavit of Janet A. Barringer, New York State Department of Law; and


3. Affidavit on behalf of Claimants (none received).


Filed papers: Claim

By an Order to Show Cause, filed November 16, 2006, the Court requested both parties to submit written statements relating to service of this claim. The Order specifically directed the following:
Claimant should submit affidavits establishing personal service or a copy of the certified mail, return receipt(s) evidencing proper service by that alternative method. If Defendant wishes to assert that the claim was not served on the Attorney-General, a statement should come from someone with personal knowledge of the contents of files and records of the Department of Law.
In response to the Order to Show Cause, Defendant has submitted the Affidavit of Janet A. Barringer, a Senior Clerk in the Albany office of the Office of the Attorney General and someone familiar with the records of that office. She states that her review of the files revealed that a copy of a Claim from Claimant Audrey Sheridan was served on the Attorney General on November 19, 2004. She further states that this Claim was returned to Claimant on the same day because it was unverified (Barringer affidavit, Exhibit A). Although there has been no submission on behalf of Claimant, the Court notes that Claimant commenced another action asserting the same cause of action (Claim No. 110138) on November 24, 2004. In that action, Claimant is represented by a different attorney, and Defendant has interposed an answer.

The Court concludes from this evidence that a copy of Claim No. 110106 was never properly served on Defendant, as required by Court of Claims Act § 11(a). The requirements set forth in Court of Claims Act § 11 are jurisdictional in nature and, as such, must be strictly construed (see Finnerty v New York State Thruway Auth., 75 NY2d 721, 722 [1989]; Commack Self-Serv. Kosher Meats v State of New York, 270 AD2d 687 [3d Dept 2000]), and a Claimant’s failure to serve a copy of the claim on the Attorney General personally or by certified mail, return receipt requested is a fatal jurisdictional defect and deprives this Court of the power to hear the claim (Dreger v New York State Thruway Auth., 81 NY2d 721, 724 [1992]; Bogel v State of New York, 175 AD2d 493 [3d Dept 1991]).

Consequently, Claim No. 110106 is dismissed.


March 2, 2007
Albany, New York

HON. RICHARD E. SISE
Judge of the Court of Claims