Daniel Randazzo

Document Type




This Note argues that the approach adopted by the Fourth Department in Goodwin—that General Municipal Law § 50-e does not require the naming of individual municipal employees— is the correct approach in terms of the text of the statute and the purpose behind the statute, as well as policy and practical implications. This Note is comprised of four parts. Part I illustrates the importance of the notice of claim requirement and introduces the text of New York General Municipal Law § 50- e(2). Part II provides a synopsis of the case law on both sides of this issue, in both New York State courts and federal courts interpreting New York law. Part III analyzes why the Goodwin approach is preferable to the Tannenbaum approach based on the text of the statute, the purpose behind it, and various policy and practical outcomes. Part IV evaluates a proposed amendment to the statute that attempts to strike a balance between the two views and explains why it does not efficiently solve the naming requirement issue. For a variety of reasons, New York and federal courts should adopt the Goodwin approach going forward.



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