I have good news to report from Albany: Governor Cuomo has signed legislation to provide uniform, fair, cost-effective and straightforward statewide procedures for filing a Notice of Claim.
NYSTLA members, leaders and our lobbyists have worked tirelessly to educate lawmakers on the need for this important practice bill.
Over the decades, hundreds of government-created entities have been granted the right to such notice, governed by a multiplicity of inconsistent procedural rules and time limits for such notices. By providing for uniform procedures and time limits, and allowing service of Notices of Claim through the Secretary of State, this bill will eliminate expensive and time-consuming litigation over unnecessarily complex issues of procedure, that unnecessarily burden the courts as well as the governmental and quasi-governmental entities involved.
Here is what it will mean - specifically - for practitioners:
- Notices of Claim to any entity, including public corporations and public authorities, entitled to such a notice will be subject to the current rules of the general municipal law, including a 90-day limit for filing a Notice of Claim;
- In addition to serving a Notice of Claim directly on a governmental or quasi-governmental entity, plaintiffs will also be able serve Notices of Claim through the Secretary of State, as current law allows for service of process on businesses and corporations;
- A filing fee of up to $250 will apply to Notices served through the Secretary of State - the fee will be divided between the State and the entity named in the Notice;
- The Department of State will provide the public with information, on the Department's website, about how to file a Notice of Claim and the entities that are entitled to such a Notice;
- All actions against an entity entitled to a Notice of Claim will be subject to a minimum 1 year and 90 day statute of limitations.
(Please note that the above provisions will not be applicable to multi-state entities – such as the Port Authority – until all relevant states have enacted necessary changes to their statutes.)
We are proud of everyone's hard work in making this bill become law.
Thank you for all that you do to support NYSTLA and the civil justice system.