The Second Department, reversing Supreme Court, determined plaintiff’s request for leave to file a late notice of claim in this sidewalk slip and fall case should have been granted. Although the excuse for filing late was not adequate, the city had timely knowledge of the nature of the claim:
The unusual occurrence report prepared and filed shortly after the petitioner’s accident provided the City with timely actual knowledge of the essential facts constituting the claim, since its specificity regarding the location and circumstances of the incident permitted the City to readily infer that a potentially actionable wrong had been committed … .
Moreover, the City’s acquisition of timely actual knowledge of the facts constituting the claim, along with the petitioner’s submission of evidence indicating that the conditions at the accident scene remained unchanged, satisfied the petitioner’s burden of presenting some evidence or plausible argument to support a finding of no substantial prejudice to the City in defending against the claim … . Matter of Catania v City of New York, 2020 NY Slip Op 06776, Second Dept 11-18-20