New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

GRIFFITH v. STATE OF NEW YORK, #2007-045-020, Claim No. 113832, Motion No. M-73695


Synopsis



Case Information

UID:
2007-045-020
Claimant(s):
JOSEPH GRIFFITH
Claimant short name:
GRIFFITH
Footnote (claimant name) :

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

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
113832
Motion number(s):
M-73695
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
GINA M. LOPEZ-SUMMA
Claimant’s attorney:
Joseph Griffith, Pro Se
Defendant’s attorney:
Hon. Andrew M. Cuomo, Attorney GeneralBy: Geoffrey B. Rossi, Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant’s attorney:

Signature date:
October 3, 2007
City:
Hauppauge
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

The following papers were reviewed by the Court on this motion: Claimant’s “Petition to Proceed in Pauperis Pursuant to CPLR 1101 (F) 1102,” Claimant’s Affidavit in Support, Defendant’s Affirmation in Opposition to Claimant’s Application for Permission to Proceed as a Poor Person and for Appointment of Counsel and the filed Claim. Claimant, Joseph Griffith, a pro se inmate, has brought this motion pursuant to Civil Practice Law and Rules (CPLR) 1101 and 1102 seeking an order granting him poor person status and assigning counsel to represent him in this matter. The underlying claim contains various allegations of negligence and medical malpractice brought against defendant, the State of New York.

By prior order of the Honorable Richard E. Sise filed June 27, 2007, claimant received a reduction in the filing fee in this case but was not granted poor person status in the prosecution of this matter. Even assuming that claimant had been granted poor person status he is not entitled to the assignment of an attorney in this action. The appointment of an attorney is generally not available to civil litigants and would be inappropriate in this action given the allegations contained in the filed claim (see Matter of Smiley, 36 NY2d 433 [1975]).

Additionally, negligence and medical malpractice claims similar to those presented by claimant are typically handled by attorneys on a contingency fee basis. This affords claimant the opportunity to be represented by counsel without incurring any expense unless he recovers an award in his favor.

Therefore, for the foregoing reasons, claimant’s motion is denied.


October 3, 2007
Hauppauge, New York

HON. GINA M. LOPEZ-SUMMA
Judge of the Court of Claims