New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims
KINGSTON v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, # 2021-015-103, Claim No. 136788, Motion No. M-97290, Cross-Motion No. CM-97336

Synopsis

Claim seeking review of an administrative determination denying unemployment benefits was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction.

Case information

UID: 2021-015-103
Claimant(s): DONETTE KINGSTON
Claimant short name: KINGSTON
Footnote (claimant name) :
Defendant(s): THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Footnote (defendant name) : The caption has been amended sua sponte to reflect the only properly named defendant.
Third-party claimant(s):
Third-party defendant(s):
Claim number(s): 136788
Motion number(s): M-97290
Cross-motion number(s): CM-97336
Judge: FRANCIS T. COLLINS
Claimant's attorney: Donette Kingston, Pro Se
Defendant's attorney: Honorable Letitia James, Attorney General
By: Lawrence E. Kozar, Esq., Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:
Signature date: November 29, 2021
City: Saratoga Springs
Comments:
Official citation:
Appellate results:
See also (multicaptioned case)

Decision

Defendant moves to dismiss the claim pursuant to CPLR 3211 (a) (2) on the ground subject matter jurisdiction is lacking. Claimant cross-moves for summary judgment.

The instant claim challenges the denial of claimant's application for unemployment benefits. Defendant contends in support of its dismissal motion that the Court of Claims lacks jurisdiction over claims seeking review of such administrative determinations. The Court agrees.

The jurisdiction of the Court of Claims is limited to claims primarily seeking money damages (Court of Claims Act 9). " '[W]here an administrative procedure is available and the claim, in essence, "would require review of an administrative agency's determination," ' " the Court of Claims lacks jurisdiction (Hope for Youth, Inc. v State of New York, 125 AD3d 1211, 1212 [3d Dept 2015], quoting Chevron U.S.A. Inc. v State of New York, 86 AD3d 820, 820 [3d Dept 2011]; see also Feuer v State of New York, 101 AD3d 1550 [3d Dept 2012] [If claim necessarily requires review of administrative agency's determination, Court of Claims lacks subject matter jurisdiction]; Green v State of New York, 90 AD3d 1577 [4th Dept 2011], rearg denied 92 AD3d 1269 [4th Dept 2012], lv dismissed and denied 18 NY3d 901 [2012]; Carver v State of New York, 79 AD3d 1393 [3d Dept 2010], lv denied 17 NY3d 707 [2011]; City of New York v State of New York, 46 AD3d 1168, 1169 [3d Dept 2007], lv denied 10 NY3d 705 [2008]). Here, the exclusive method for challenging a denial of benefits under the Unemployment Insurance Law (Article 18) is set forth in Labor Law 620 through 625 which require, first, a request for a hearing and, second, an appeal to the Appeal Board. A dissatisfied party may thereafter seek review of a decision of the Appeal Board by filing an appeal in the Appellate Division, Third Department pursuant to Labor Law 624. As these provisions of the Labor Law constitute "the exclusive method for challenging unemployment insurance determinations," this Court lacks jurisdiction of the claim (see Prowse v State of New York, 4 AD3d 581, 582 [3d Dept 2004]). Accordingly, the claim must be dismissed.

Based on the foregoing, defendant's motion is granted and the claim is dismissed. Claimant's cross motion is denied as moot.

November 29, 2021

Saratoga Springs, New York

FRANCIS T. COLLINS

Judge of the Court of Claims

Papers Considered:

M-97290

1. Notice of Motion dated August 30, 2021;

2. Affirmation in Support dated August 30, 2021, with Exhibit A.

CM-97336

1. Notice of motion dated September 17, 2021.