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No extension of time for Plaintiff to effect service due to failure to exercise due diligence; Court dismisses auto-accident complaint

Nancly Jean-Pierre v. Roderick Crawford, Index No. 308139/2012 (Sup.Ct. Bronx Cty. October 4, 2013)

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Purported service of process at a location in the Bronx, nearly three years after a traffic accident, was improper, where the defendant established he was, in fact, a resident of Brooklyn. Acting Supreme Court Justice Julia I. Rodriguez dismissed the Complaint and denied the plaintiff's cross-motion for an extension of time to effect service, after the defendant showed he lived in Brooklyn at the time when the action was commenced.

Courts are empowered, under section 306-b of the CPLR, to extend a plaintiff's time for service of process upon good cause shown and/or in the interest of justice. Justice Rodriguez found that plaintiff could demonstrate neither good cause nor that an extension was in the interest of justice. "New York City has a transient population raising the specter that Defendant may have moved. A simple check at the department of motor vehicles at the time of commencement of the action would have made Plaintiff aware of any change in address.", wrote Justice Rodriguez.

The motion was briefed and argued by AGF&J partner Irwin Miller and associate Jay Gunsher.