A recent decision by the Court of Claims (Hon. Thomas H. Scuccimarra) approved the Claimant Emil Realty’s request for an additional three months to file its appraisal report valuing the subject property (530 Gardner Avenue, and a permanent easement over 518 Gardner Avenue). The parties had previously stipulated to other extensions, however the State refused to consent to a further extension beyond the February 15, 2015 deadline as it had already filed its appraisal, and argued it would be prejudiced by the imposition of additional statutory interest at 9% from the title vesting date.
The Court granted Claimant’s request for additional time and denied the State’s request to suspend interest. The decision can be read by clicking here: Emil Realty Co v State of New York
While legitimate arguments can be made that the State had an interest in suspending interest for the additional three months, it also seems that professional courtesy should be extended for extensions wherever possible. Indeed, given the length of time it takes the State to process judgment and payments (most recently in the Mazur Brothers litigation, which went on for nearly a decade), it seems that interest is not always a large concern.
Under the Uniform Court Rules for the Court of Claims, appraisals must be filed within six months after filing the claim (22 NYCRR 206.21(b). An initial application for an additional six months may be granted upon a letter showing “good cause” for the extension, and any other extensions are held to the same standard.
Many lawyers may not be aware, but the NY Courts website contains “Standards of Civility” for Lawyers, which are ” a set of guidelines intended to encourage lawyers, judges and court personnel to observe principles of civility and decorum, and to confirm the legal profession’s rightful status as an honorable and respected profession where courtesy and civility are observed as a matter of course.” For some Friday reading, they can be read by clicking here.
For quick reference, the Guidelines are divided into four topics:
- lawyers duties to other lawyers, litigants and witnesses
- lawyers’ duties to the court and court personnel
- court’s duties to lawyers, parties and witnesses; and
- court personnel’s duties to lawyers and litigan