In Bill Purgatory: Not Delivered To The Governor To Sign Just Yet


Lavern’s Law was passed by the New York Assembly and Senate within a day of each other.  This was after pushing and prodding from Governor Cuomo.  But since both have passed the law, it has not been yet packaged up and sent to Governor Cuomo to sign.  It is still waiting in bill purgatory.

What is this bill purgatory?

After a bill is passed in both houses, the bill most get packaged up and presented to the Governor.  This entails collecting all of the public comments, hearing findings, support and objection to the bill, and other memoranda which constitute the “bill jacket.”  This is used to show the legislative intent of a law and how it was meant to be applied, what was considered in passing it, and why certain changes or edits were made.  It sounds very boring, but it is actually incredibly important to lawyers and the court when they are arguing points of law about ambiguities in the law.

Lavern’s Law is very important to New Yorkers because it created a new time period to commence a medical malpractice causes premised on a cancer misdiagnosis.  This is because most cases of misdiagnosis are discovered later once the cancer has been allowed to fester and become deadly, such as in the case of Lavern.

So the longer that it takes for this bill to get delivered to the Governor, the longer it will be for him to sign it and the more people will have their medical malpractice claims—which may have been saved today—expire and no longer able to be sued.

This may not be delivered to the Governor until December when bills that are not yet delivered during the year are sent in a bulk package.  December!  This is because the Legislature is on recess, so there are few staff still remaining in Albany to package, approve, and sent the bill to the Governor.