The Second Department, reversing Supreme Court, determined plaintiff’s motion to amend the summons and complaint to add an apparently misnamed party after the statute of limitations had run should not have been granted:
On March 27, 2014, the plaintiff allegedly was injured while boarding a ski lift at Hunter Mountain in Hunter. On March 23, 2016, the plaintiff commenced this action against the defendants, Hunter Mountain and Hunter Mountain Resort, LLC, to recover damages for personal injuries. After the defendants failed to appear or answer the complaint, a default judgment dated April 18, 2018, was entered against the defendants. By notice of motion dated September 15, 2018, the plaintiff moved, inter alia, in effect, pursuant to CPLR 305(c) and 3025(b) for leave to amend the summons, complaint, and caption to name Hunter Mountain Ski Bowl, Inc., doing business as Hunter Mountain (hereinafter HMSB), as a defendant instead of the named defendant Hunter Mountain. …
Relief pursuant to CPLR 305(c) may be granted only where there is evidence that the correct defendant was served, albeit misnamed in the original process, and the correct defendant would not be prejudiced by the granting of the amendment … . While CPLR 305(c) may be used to cure a misnomer in the description of a party defendant, it cannot be used after the expiration of the statute of limitations as a device to add or substitute an entirely new defendant who was not properly served … .
… There is no evidence that HMSB and Hunter Mountain are one and the same entity … . … [T]he plaintiff failed to establish that he properly served HMSB or that the Supreme Court obtained jurisdiction over it … .
… [T]he plaintiff was not entitled to relief pursuant to CPLR 3025(b) for leave to amend the summons, complaint, and caption to add HMSB as a defendant, since he did not provide a copy of his proposed amended summons and complaint, … . The proposed amendments are patently devoid of merit because the statute of limitations bars any claim against HMSB, a new party to this action … , and the plaintiff failed to establish that the relation-back doctrine pursuant to CPLR 203(f) applied … . Nossov v Hunter Mtn., 2020 NY Slip Op 04175, Second Dept 7-22-20