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The Court of Appeals on December 22, 2016 declared it established a new “fair balance" in reviewing motions by petitioners seeking to file late Notice of Claims against public entities. When a petitioner attempts to file a late Notice of Claim he/she must meet the requirements of the General Municipal Law which includes showing that there was a lack of prejudice to the public corporation if a late notice were allowed to be filed. The Appellate Divisions were split in their positions as to which party had the burden of proof to demonstrate that a late notice of claim substantially prejudices the public corporation. The Court of Appeals now holds the burden rests on the petitioner to show the late notice will not substantially prejudice the public entity. Once the petitioner meets the necessary burden the public entity must submit particularized evidence showing the municipal corporation will be substantially prejudiced if the late notice is allowed. The case presents important issues for municipalities.  For further information on this case and defending such claims contact Paul V Mullin, Jenna Klucsik or Daniel Cavarello who handle municipal matters at Sugarman Law Firm.

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