New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

MADIA v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2008-045-015, Claim No. 113699, Motion No. M-74529


Synopsis


Claimant motion to amend claim.

Case Information

UID:
2008-045-015
Claimant(s):
DEBORAH ANN MADIA
1 1.The caption has been amended, sua sponte, to reflect the State of New York as the proper defendant.
Claimant short name:
MADIA
Footnote (claimant name) :

Defendant(s):
THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Footnote (defendant name) :
The caption has been amended, sua sponte, to reflect the State of New York as the proper defendant.
Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
113699
Motion number(s):
M-74529
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
GINA M. LOPEZ-SUMMA
Claimant’s attorney:
Frank X. Kilgannon, P.C.By: Frank X. Kilgannon, Esq.
Defendant’s attorney:
Hon. Andrew M. Cuomo, Attorney GeneralBy: John L. Belford, IV, Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant’s attorney:

Signature date:
April 14, 2008
City:
Hauppauge
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

The following papers were read and considered by the Court on this Motion: Claimant’s Notice of Motion, Claimant’s Affirmation in Support with the annexed Amended Claim and attachment, Defendant’s Affirmation in Opposition and the filed Claim.

Claimant, Deborah Ann Madia, has brought this motion seeking an order granting leave to amend her claim pursuant to CPLR 3025(b). The original claim, filed on May 14, 2007, concerns a slip and fall which occurred on February 14, 2007 on snow and ice on the campus of the SUNY at Old Westbury. Claimant alleges that on that date she was informed by phone from officials at the school that the college was open despite the fact that it was snowing. However, when claimant arrived at the school she was told that it was closed. She then went to the campus center for help where she slipped and fell on snow and water. She was assisted by a police officer and nurse after her fall. She remained on the floor of the campus center for approximately thirty to forty minutes until an ambulance arrived. She injured her left groin, back, leg and neck as a result of the fall. The proposed amended claim adds an ad damnum clause seeking $500,000 in damages. The proposed amended claim also expands the facts of the allegations but does not add any new allegations or causes of action. The attachment to the proposed claim more specifically describes the injuries previously mentioned in the original claim.

CPLR 3025 (b) provides that “a party may amend his pleading, or supplement it by setting forth additional or subsequent transactions or occurrences, at any time by leave of court or by stipulation of all parties. Leave shall be freely given upon such terms as may be just including the granting of costs and continuances” (see also 22 NYCRR § 206.7). Courts are vested with broad discretion in determining whether to grant leave to amend, provided there is no prejudice or surprise to the nonmoving party and the amendment is not palpably improper or without merit (Maloney Carpentry, Inc. v Budnik, 37 AD3d 558 [2d Dept 2007]; Ricca v Valenti, 24 AD3d 647 [2d Dept 2005]. However, leave to amend a claim shall not be permitted to cure a jurisdictional defect (Lepkowski v State of New York, 1 NY3d 201 [2003]).

Defendant initially argues that claimant’s motion should be denied as moot since the requirement of a total sum claimed in personal injury claims is no longer a jurisdictional requirement (see CCA 11[b]). Defendant continues that the proposed amendments add additional facts to the claim. However, defendant fails to argue that the proposed amendments would result in prejudice or unfair surprise to the defendant or that the amendments are palpably improper. Defendant does not contend that the original claim fails to comply with the requirements of Court of Claims Act § 11(b).

The Court has been presented with nothing to suggest that the allowance of the amended claim would somehow prejudice defendant in this case (see Hunter v State of New York, UID # 2007-015-163, Collins, J. [Ct Cl 2007]). Thus, the Court finds that claimant’s proposed amendments are permissible.

Based upon the foregoing, the claimant’s motion to amend the claim is granted. Claimant is directed to file and serve the amended claim, as tendered with the motion, in haec verba, together with the attachment to the amended claim, within thirty days from the date this Decision and Order is filed.

April 14, 2008
Hauppauge, New York

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