THE JUDGE SHOULD NOT HAVE, SUA SPONTE, DISMISSED THE COMPLAINT IN THIS FORECLOSURE ACTION AFTER PLAINTIFF FAILED TO MEET A DEADLINE SET IN A STATUS CONFERENCE (SECOND DEPT).
The Second Department, reversing Supreme Court, determined the judge in this foreclosure proceeding should not have, sua sponte, dismissed the complaint when plaintiff did not move for a judgment of foreclosure and sale by the deadline set in a status conference order:
On March 22, 2017, the Supreme Court issued a status conference order … directing the plaintiff to “file an application for a [j]udgment of [f]oreclosure [and] sale” by June 7, 2017. The plaintiff failed to do so. In an order entered June 15, 2017 (hereinafter the dismissal order), the court, sua sponte, directed dismissal of the complaint and cancellation of the notice of pendency.
A court’s power to dismiss an action, sua sponte, is to be used sparingly and only when extraordinary circumstances exist to warrant dismissal … . Here, the plaintiff’s failure to move for a judgment of foreclosure and sale as directed by the … status conference order was not a sufficient ground upon which to sua sponte direct dismissal of the complaint and cancellation of the notice of pendency … . Deutsche Bank Trust Co. Ams. v Martinez, 2023 NY Slip Op 01179, Second Dept 3-8-23
Practice Point: Sua sponte dismissals of complaints are disfavored. Here the failure to meet a deadline set in a status conference did not justify a sua sponte dismissal of the complaint.
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