New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

HUMPHREY v. B-BLOCK LEVEL 3 C.O.’S AT SOUTHPORT CORRECTIONAL FACILITY, #2008-032-109, Claim No. 114897, Motion Nos. M-75018, CM-75104


Synopsis



Case Information

UID:
2008-032-109
Claimant(s):
SINCLAIR HUMPHREY
Claimant short name:
HUMPHREY
Footnote (claimant name) :

Defendant(s):
B-BLOCK LEVEL 3 C.O.'S AT SOUTHPORT CORRECTIONAL FACILITY
Footnote (defendant name) :

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
114897
Motion number(s):
M-75018
Cross-motion number(s):
CM-75104
Judge:
JUDITH A. HARD
Claimant’s attorney:
Sinclair Humphrey, Pro Se
Defendant’s attorney:
Hon. Andrew M. Cuomo, NYS Attorney GeneralBy: Roberto Barbosa, Assistant Attorney General, Of Counsel
Third-party defendant’s attorney:

Signature date:
August 19, 2008
City:
Albany
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

Sinclair Humphrey (Claimant) seeks to amend the caption of this bailment action and for permission to append an additional exhibit (Form 1421 - Inmate Claim Form) to the claim. The caption amendment is to substitute “The State of New York” for “B-Block Level 3 C.O.’s at Southport Correctional Facility” as the defendant. Defendant opposes the application and cross-moves for dismissal asserting the Court lacks jurisdiction over the individual State employees.



Initially, the Court notes that a caption is frequently changed to reflect the State of New York as the only proper party defendant, a change which is most often done sua sponte (see e.g. R. v State of New York, UID #2007-010-014, Claim No. 108458, Ruderman, J.). This is particularly true, where as here, claimant has made service upon the defendant (Barbosa Affirmation ¶¶5 and 8) and defendant has not asserted the manner of service of the claim was improper in its Answer (Court of Claims Act § 11 [a]).

On this record, the Court can not say the claimant has failed to comply with the jurisdictional requirements of the Court of Claims Act such as to warrant dismissal by virtue of the misnomer of the party defendant (see Correction Law 24; Woodward v State of New York, 23 AD3d 852, 855-856 lv dismissed 6 NY3d 807 [State real party in interest for conduct undertaken in an official capacity and in the exercise of an official governmental function]). Accordingly, defendant’s motion is denied and claimant’s motion to amend the caption to reflect the State of New York as the proper party defendant is granted. The Clerk of the Court of Claims is directed to amend the caption accordingly.

Turning to claimant’s further request for relief, defendant acknowledges claimant has alleged he has exhausted his administrative remedies and correctly notes the proposed exhibit would support that allegation (Barbosa Affirmation ¶ 5). The time and place for such a submission is either upon a summary judgment application or at trial of the claim.

Accordingly, that branch of claimant’s motion is denied.



August 19, 2008
Albany, New York

HON. JUDITH A. HARD
Judge of the Court of Claims


Papers Considered:


1. Notice of Motion and Supporting Papers of Sinclair Humphrey filed May 23, 2008, including the Amended Claim;

2. Notice of Cross-Motion and Supporting Affirmation /Affirmation in Opposition of Assistant Attorney General Roberto Barbosa (Barbosa Opposition) filed June 13, 2008 with annexed Exhibits A-D;

3. Letter from claimant received June 23, 2008;

4. Claim filed on February 25, 2008 and Verified Answer filed on March 24, 2008.