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October 24, 2012

Failure to establish due diligence in ascertaining the limitations period for commencing the action fatal to complainant’s untimely petition


Failure to establish due diligence in ascertaining the limitations period for commencing the action fatal to complainant’s untimely petition
Pichardo v New York City Dept. of Educ., 2012 NY Slip Op 07071, Appellate Division, First Department

Supreme Court, New York County, granted the New York City Department of Education’s motion to dismiss the complaint filed by Karien Pichardo’s against them as time-barred.

The court was not persuaded by Pichardo’s claim that the Department had “contributed to her delay in commencing the action” and that therefore should be estopped from asserting a statute of limitations defense with respect to her claims of gender and disability discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, and breach of contract.

The Appellate Division agreed, noting that Pichardo had failed to establish due diligence on her part in ascertaining the limitations period for commencing the action.

The court explained that Pichardo’s “non-tort claims” accrued on the date of her termination as a probationary teacher while her allegations of “negligent supervision and hiring and negligent infliction of emotional distress claims accrued on the date of the last alleged underlying act.” Further, the Appellate Division ruled that her “tort claims” were barred as well.

Once aspect of Pichardo’s argument alleged a “continuing” action that might preserve certain claims in her petition. The Appellate Division’s ruling, however, noted that “in opposition to [the Department’s] motion [to dismiss her petition], [Pichardo] failed to avail herself of the opportunity to submit an affidavit or other evidence to amplify the allegations in her complaint and establish the timeliness of her claims.”

The decision is posted on the Internet at:


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