New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims
GAFFNEY v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, # 2017-045-055, Claim No. 124541, Motion Nos. M-90565, M-90777


Defendant's motion to dismiss pro se inmate claim for failure to state a cause of action and failure to meet the requirements of CCA 11 (b). Claimant brought a separate motion to amend the claim.

Case information

UID: 2017-045-055
Claimant short name: GAFFNEY
Footnote (claimant name) :
Footnote (defendant name) :
Third-party claimant(s):
Third-party defendant(s):
Claim number(s): 124541
Motion number(s): M-90565, M-90777
Cross-motion number(s):
Claimant's attorney: Carlton Gaffney Pro Se
Defendant's attorney: Hon. Eric T. Schneiderman, Attorney General
By: Elizabeth A. Gavin, Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:
Signature date: January 12, 2018
City: Hauppauge
Official citation:
Appellate results:
See also (multicaptioned case)


The following papers were read and considered by the Court on these motions: Defendant's Notice of Motion; Defendant's Affirmation in Support with annexed Exhibits A-B; Claimant's correspondence dated June 26, 2017; Claimant's Notice of Motion; Claimant's Affidavit in Support with Annexed Amended Claim.

Defendant, the State of New York, has brought this motion pursuant to Civil Practice Law and Rules 3211 (a) (2) and Court of Claims Act (CCA) 11 (b) seeking an order dismissing the claim in this matter. In response claimant wrote the Court seeking an extension of time to respond to the motion. Claimant's request was granted and he then filed a separate motion seeking leave to amend his claim.

Defendant argues that the claim should be dismissed because it does not comply with the requirements of Court of Claims Act 11 (b).

Court of Claims Act 11 (b) requires in pertinent part that "[t]he claim shall state the time when and place where such claim arose, the nature of same, [and] the items of damage or injuries claimed to have been sustained." These requirements are jurisdictional in nature and must be strictly complied with in order to properly initiate an action against defendant (Kolnacki v State of New York, 8 NY3d 277 [2007]). "The Court of Claims Act does not require [defendant] to ferret out or assemble information that section 11 (b) obligates the claimant to allege" (Lepkowski v State of New York, 1 NY3d 201, 208 [2003]).

The claim in this matter merely states that it is for various categories of damages such as medical malpractice, nursing malpractice, negligent medical care and the denial of proper medical care without any supporting factual details. Similarly, the claim also includes a list of various injuries that were allegedly caused by defendant. The claim fails to include any description of the nature of the claim. The claim does not provide the reader with any information as to what defendant allegedly did or failed to do which caused claimant's injuries. As a result the Court finds that the claim fails to satisfy the requirements set forth in Court of Claims Act 11 (b). Thus, the claim is jurisdictionally defective and the Court is constrained to dismiss the claim (Fairchild Corp. v State of New York, 117 AD3d 780 [2d Dept 2014]; Hunter v State of New York, 72 AD3d 1030 [2d Dept 2010]).

Claimant has brought a motion seeking leave to amend his claim pursuant to CPLR 3025 (b). However, leave to amend a claim shall not be permitted to cure a jurisdictional defect in the Court of Claims (Lepkowski v State of New York,, 1 NY 3d 201 [2003]; Hogan v State of New York, 59 AD3d 754 [3d Dept 2009]). As such, the Court is constrained to deny claimant's motion.

Therefore, for the foregoing reasons, defendant's motion is granted. Claimant's motion is denied and the claim is dismissed.

January 12, 2018

Hauppauge, New York


Judge of the Court of Claims