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  1. #1
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    Aug 2013
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    Default Name Change is Not a "Triable Action"-Poor Person Order Not Allowed in New York

    My question involves name change laws in the State of: New York


    I recently filed an Adult Name Change Petition. Since my family of 4 lives on a mere $600 a month, I also filed an Affidavit in Support of Application to Proceed as a Poor Person.

    It was denied as being non-meritorious due to an Adult Name Change not constituting the purview of a Triable Action under CPLR 1101.

    Is not the very definition of "triable action" filing a petition to a Superior Court Judge?

    I cannot afford an attorney, clearly. However, I researched for months, and put this petition together with the help of the NYS Court District Help Center. They told me to file the Poor Person Relief and there was a 99% I would not have to pay the $210(a year's savings for us).

    Any advice? Why is this legal to deny me? Is there a way to appeal this? Thanks You!

  2. #2
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    Sep 2011
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    Default Re: Name Change is Not a "Triable Action"-Poor Person Order Not Allowed in New York

    I'm sorry, the waiver is for prosecuted or defending an action. A name change does not fall under the law for waiver of fees. It is not necessary to have a name change. It is something you elect to do.

    http://www.nlada.org/DMS/Documents/1...PLR%201101.pdf

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Name Change is Not a "Triable Action"-Poor Person Order Not Allowed in New York

    It is legal to deny you because there is no law that guarantees you a waiver.

  4. #4
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    Aug 2013
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    Default Re: Name Change is Not a "Triable Action"-Poor Person Order Not Allowed in New York

    Since when? Is this new? There is nothing yet listed in the laws online, and no one else seems to know about it. Everyone knows you can file as a Poor Person for ANY petition. Including name changes.

    Your link contradicts you. I've already read the law to confirm it.

    Thank you for your reply.

  5. #5
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    Jun 2006
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    Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Name Change is Not a "Triable Action"-Poor Person Order Not Allowed in New York

    Please post a link to the law that guarantees you a fee waiver regardless.

  6. #6
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    Aug 2013
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    Default Re: Does a Court Have to Offer Fee Waivers for Name Change Proceedings

    Some references:

    http://srlp.org/wp-content/uploads/2.../kyr-NC-en.pdf

    http://www.nycourts.gov/courts/8jd/p...RIE_050213.pdf

    http://www.nycourts.gov/courts/8jd/p...RIE_050313.pdf

    http://www.lawny.org/index.php/famil...e-self-help-58

    http://www.thefamilycenter.org/clien...e-information/

    http://srlp.org/resources/namechange/

    http://www.nycourts.gov/courts/6jd/f.../ifp_howto.pdf

    Proceeding as a Poor Person is common knowledge in Name Change cases...

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Quoting cbg
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    Please post a link to the law that guarantees you a fee waiver regardless.
    Disagreeable posted a link to the law:

    http://www.nlada.org/DMS/Documents/1...PLR%201101.pdf

    I just posted several sites, from the NY State Government's own pages, and 3rd party pages that show it is not only the law, but common knowledge. I found them in a few seconds on google.

    How can a Superior Court Judge order something illegal?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Quoting cbg
    View Post
    Please post a link to the law that guarantees you a fee waiver regardless.
    Um...CPLR 1101 does...

  7. #7
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    Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Does a Court Have to Offer Fee Waivers for Name Change Proceedings

    Checked all your links and don't see a single one that says you MUST be granted your Poor Person status. I do see where it tells you what to do if you are denied, which would seem to indicate that denial is possible and legal.

    ) Waiver of fee in certain cases. A plaintiff may seek to commence his or her action
    without payment of the fee required by filing the form affidavit, attesting that such
    plaintiff is unable to pay the costs, fees and expenses necessary to prosecute or defend the
    action, which shall be available in the clerk’s office along with the summons and
    complaint or summons with notice or third-party summons and complaint. The case will
    be given an index number, or, in courts other than the supreme or county courts, any
    necessary filing number and the application will be submitted to a judge of the court. If
    the court approves the application, the plaintiff will by written order be given notice that
    all fees and costs relating to the filing and service shall be waived. If the court denies the
    application the plaintiff will by written order be given notice that the case will be
    dismissed if the fee is not paid within one hundred twenty days of the date of the order.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Does a Court Have to Offer Fee Waivers for Name Change Proceedings

    Hon, that doesn't say they MUST grant you the waiver. It says they MAY.

    It might not sound like much of a difference, but legally, it's massive.
    An intelligent hell would be better than a stupid paradise - Victor Hugo

    Do not microwave grapes

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
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    Default Re: Does a Court Have to Offer Fee Waivers for Name Change Proceedings

    Quote Quoting cbg
    View Post
    Checked all your links and don't see a single one that says you MUST be granted your Poor Person status. I do see where it tells you what to do if you are denied, which would seem to indicate that denial is possible and legal.

    ) Waiver of fee in certain cases. A plaintiff may seek to commence his or her action
    without payment of the fee required by filing the form affidavit, attesting that such
    plaintiff is unable to pay the costs, fees and expenses necessary to prosecute or defend the
    action, which shall be available in the clerk’s office along with the summons and
    complaint or summons with notice or third-party summons and complaint. The case will
    be given an index number, or, in courts other than the supreme or county courts, any
    necessary filing number and the application will be submitted to a judge of the court. If
    the court approves the application, the plaintiff will by written order be given notice that
    all fees and costs relating to the filing and service shall be waived. If the court denies the
    application the plaintiff will by written order be given notice that the case will be
    dismissed if the fee is not paid within one hundred twenty days of the date of the order.
    But the fee waiver was not even accepted! It was denied on the grounds that name changes are not allowed to be filed with poor person status. The links clearly show that it is allowed.

    The only reason for denial, is if the courts deem me to not be indigent. I think most people would agree that $600 a month for 4 people is indigent. What is the current poverty level in the USA? $3,500 a month for 4 people?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Quoting Dogmatique
    View Post
    Hon, that doesn't say they MUST grant you the waiver. It says they MAY.

    It might not sound like much of a difference, but legally, it's massive.
    I never said they have to grant it. I said they have to receive it.

    They can only deny me on the grounds of not being indigent. They can't just say "Nope. Can't file that stuff with a name change. That's the only petition that it's not valid for."

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Default Re: Does a Court Have to Offer Fee Waivers for Name Change Proceedings

    We get that you don't thing it's fair that the court doesn't have to pick up the tab for your name change proceeding. You don't need to keep telling us that you don't like it and don't think it's fair.

    If you want to use a different name, you can simply use a different name. On that basis, the New York Courts are not obligated to provide fee waivers.
    Quote Quoting Matter of Sakaris, 160 Misc 2d 657 (Civ Ct, Richmond County 1993)
    Under common law, a person is free to assume any name he or she chooses, in the absence of fraud, misrepresentation or interference with the rights of others (Smith v United States Cas. Co., 197 N.Y. 420; Matter of Linda Ann A., 126 Misc 2d 43 [Sup Ct, Queens County 1984]). No judicial proceeding is necessary to change a name; it can be made effective through simple usage or habit (Matter of Halligan, 46 AD2d 170; see also, Matter of Ellerby, 99 Misc 2d 691 [Civ Ct, Kings County 1979]).
    Quote Quoting Matter of Ellerby, 99 Misc 2d 691 (Civ Ct, Kings County 1979)
    As Kras (supra) makes clear, the absence of an alternative remedy is the appropriate test of whether the State must provide access to the courts. Here, there is an alternative. In fact, as stated in the affidavit of petitioner's guardian, the infant petitioner has used that alternative; she has already adopted her chosen name and is widely known by it.

    In view of the common-law alternative, requiring the city to assume the costs of a statutory name change would contravene the policy underlying poor person's relief.
    Quote Quoting Matter of Furick, 33 Misc.3d 169 (Sup Ct, Dutchess County 2011)
    This rationale is consistent with the holding in Matter of Ellerby (99 Misc 2d 691 [1979]), which dealt solely with whether a judicial name change application entitled a petitioner to poor person relief. The court sees no rational basis to have the cost of the petitioner's personal preference for a name be something that is borne by anyone but him. Simply stated, the taxpayers of the State of New York are not required to pay for an individual's judicial name change.

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