CONTRACTORS MUST COMPLY WITH NYCHA’S NOTICE OF CLAIM PROVISION
Updated: Jul 13, 2022
In April 2021, an Appellate Court in New York affirmed dismissal of a contractor’s complaint against NYCHA based on its failure to timely file a notice of claim under Section 32 of the Contract. APS Contractors, Inc., v. New York City Housing Authority,193 A.D.3d 628 (2021).
“Section 32 (a) and (b) of the construction contract mandated that plaintiff provide defendant with a notice of claim for extra costs or damages stating the nature and amount of the extra cost or damages sustained and the basis of the claim, within 20 days after such claim arises, and that such a notice was a condition precedent to an action seeking damages.”
The court ruled that after NYCHA rejected the contractor’s extra work claim in a series of emails in July 2016, it triggered the contractor’s obligation to file a notice of claim within 20 days under Section 32 of the Contract, which the contractor failed to do. The court also rejected the contractor's argument that the email exchanges themselves satisfied the notice of claim requirement.
The 20-day notice of claim requirement under Section 32 (a) of NYCHA’s standard form contract has been routinely upheld by the courts in New York, resulting in the dismissal of countless complaints for unpaid extra work. When performing work for NYCHA, the SCA or other public agencies in New York, a contractor must be aware of the various statutes and contract provisions that require the filing of notices of claims prior to filing a lawsuit, since failing to comply will most likely result in the dismissal of your complaint, regardless of the merit of your extra work or other claims.
About the author: George Marco is an attorney practicing in the field of construction law. He also holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and was previously employed as a Project Manager for a public improvement contractor.
Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and not intended to serve as legal counsel.